Only 39 days before the Nov. 8 election, there's a late-breaking scandal involving former Mike Pence aide Diego Morales, the GOP nominee for Secretary of State in Indiana.
"On Friday morning, political writer Abdul-Hakim Shabazz published interviews with two women who said they had been sexually assaulted by Morales years ago. The stories appeared in Shabazz's publication, the Cheat Sheet," the Indianapolis Star reported Friday evening. "The allegations are the latest controversy to touch Morales, who was nominated by Republican delegates at convention despite once being fired from the very office he now seeks. His military experience has also been scrutinized after he made it the focus of his campaign despite spending a total of just three months and 18 days on active duty as part of his training period."
Indiana Republican Party Chairman Kyle Hupfer indicated he knew about the allegations after a Republican asked to meet with him.
"At the meeting, she shared with me elements of a story that have now been made public," Hupfer said. "It wasn’t then, nor is it now, my story to share."
The initial story, which appeared as a 21-page document, says the women accused Morales of "groping them and inappropriate sexual contact."
The first woman says she met Morales while working on a Republican campaign and the second says they met at the secretary of state's office.
Both women say they are now backing Democrat Destiny Wells, an Afghanistan veteran and Army Reserve lieutenant colonel.
"Diego Morales' victims need to be heard and believed," Wells said in a statement.
"It takes tremendous courage in coming forward, and the last thing I want is for their personal sacrifice to be for naught," she explained. "While this race has been focused on safeguarding our right to vote, we too must safeguard a woman's right to exist in the workplace free of sexual harassment and assault."
"For weeks we have seen mounting evidence that Diego will say and do anything to get what he wants—as Hoosiers, I know this is not in line with our values—we have had enough," she added.
Jeff Mauer, the Libertarian Party nominee, said Morales "should come forward in a public debate to answer questions about these allegations as well as unanswered questions about his military service. Refusing to debate is refusing to answer to ‘We The People;’ Mr. Morales insults not only all Hoosiers but our American process.”
Morales said the accusations are "a compilation of pure gossip, rumor and blatant innuendo."