Charles Barkley entered the political arena Monday night in Alabama, speaking at a campaign rally for U.S. Senate candidate Doug Jones against Roy Moore.
Barkley said during his brief remarks that Moore should not be running for office.
"There's no way possible this guy should, No. 1, be in an election . . . there's no way," Barkley told a cheering crowd in Birmingham. "I mean, it's unbelievable that this guy is still in the race when people in your own party say they won't vote for you or support you. That's a dead giveaway. It's amazing."
Barkley also chided his fellow Alabamians for supporting Moore.
"At some point, we've got to stop looking like idiots to the nation," he said.
Moore, a Republican, is running against Jones, a Democrat, in a special election to succeed Jeff Sessions, who left the Senate to become U.S. attorney general under President Donald Trump. The election is set for Tuesday.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and other prominent U.S. senators withdrew or chose to withhold their support for Moore after a woman told The Washington Post that Moore touched her inappropriately when she was underage in the late 1970s. Other women came forward for the story to say Moore dated them when they were their late teens and he was in his early 30s.
Moore has denied all the allegations and said the women are lying.
Moore is also being criticized for race-related comments that have received coverage in the past few days.
Speaking at a rally in Florence, Ala., in September, the former federal judge said (audio per the Los Angeles Times) in response to a question that America was great “at the time when families were united — even though we had slavery. They cared for one another. People were strong in the families. Our families were strong. Our country had a direction.”
In 2011, Moore said in a radio interview (per CNN) that the federal government would work much better if the Constitution were pared back to the first 10 amendments contained in the Bill of Rights. The 13th, 14th and 15th amendments abolished slavery, granted citizenship to all natural-born U.S. citizens, and gave African-American men the right to vote.
Moore's campaign has said the media are deliberately misrepresenting the candidate's comments.
Trump, whose Make America Great Again slogan has struck a chord with millions of Americans, endorsed Moore in the race recently after initially supporting one of Moore's opponents in the Republican primary election, Luther Strange.