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Roy Moore infected with "false religious virus": Evangelicals reject Moore at Alabama gathering

Religious leaders against Roy Moore
Religious leaders speak out against Roy Moore 02:21

BIRMINGHAM -- With Alabama's special election just over three weeks away, religious leaders rallied on Saturday against U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore. They took aim at Moore's moral character as he battles several allegations of sexual misconduct.

At the Tabernacle Baptist Church in Birmingham, evangelicals gathered to reject the idea that Roy Moore is their kind of Christian.

To them, his alleged unwanted advances or assaults against women only add to his unfitness.

"Even before these allegations made national headlines, it was clear that Moore's policy agenda endangered the children of Alabama," said Rev. William Barber. "Moore imagines the struggle for equality in America as a story of loss. Think about this."

Evangelical leaders gather in Birmingham to reject Roy Moore. CBS News

Those on stage pointed to a phrase Moore used Tuesday night at a revival meeting in Jackson, Alabama.

"They started creating new rights in 1965," Moore said. "Today we've got a problem."

Roy Moore's wife speaks for her husband's campaign 02:01

The 1965 Voting Rights Act was designed to lift barriers erected by states and localities to block minority voters.

A woman introduced Moore on Thursday by saying "I present the hero of the day, Judge Roy Moore." 

Throughout the week, a different element of the envangelical ministry has championed Moore and demonized his critics.

"I say to them and I'll quote the Ten Commandments, thou shall not bear false witness," said one speaker. 

Comments like that, as Rev. Laughton Hicks said Saturday, is the problem.

Roy Moore rallies supporters amid sexual misconduct allegations 02:36

"Roy Moore is a dedicated servant of and is seriously infected with this false religious virus, this false Christian religious virus as are most white males in Alabama," Hicks said.

Moore hasn't been seen in public since he fled from reporters questions on Thursday, but he has sent out his wife and legal staff to argue his case, which many in the Republican party leadership find unconvincing.  

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