A Republican senator has made a personal donation to a rival Democratic politician, saying he wanted to support “country over party”.
Jeff Flake wrote a $100 (£75) cheque for the campaign fund of Doug Jones, the Democrat running against Roy Moore in next week’s Senate election in Alabama.
Mr Moore, now 70, has been accused by multiple women of pursuing them when they were teenagers and he was in his 30s.
One said she was only 14 when he initiated sexual contact. The former judge has denied the accusations and blamed them on “socialists” and LGBT people.
On Twitter Mr Flake agreed with former Presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who had said: “Roy Moore in the US Senate would be a stain on the GOP and on the nation. Leigh Corfman and other victims are courageous heroes. No vote, no majority is worth losing our honor, our integrity.”
Mr Flake, of Arizona, added in a tweet: “A Roy Moore victory is no victory for the GOP and the nation.”
Posting an image of the cheque on Tuesday he said: “Country over Party”.
Mr Flake has been an outspoken critic of President Donald Trump, who endorsed Mr Moore on Tuesday morning.
The billionaire tweeted: “Democrats refusal to give even one vote for massive Tax Cuts is why we need Republican Roy Moore to win in Alabama. We need his vote on stopping crime, illegal immigration, Border Wall, Military, Pro Life, V.A., Judges 2nd Amendment and more. No to Jones, a Pelosi/Schumer Puppet!”
He later spoke to Mr Moore on the phone and according to the White House’s deputy press secretary, Raj Shah, it was “a positive call”.
At a rally on Tuesday night, the President’s former chief strategist called Republican leaders in Congress “cowards” for distancing themselves from Mr Moore.
Steve Bannon, back at the helm of the populist political website Breitbart, told supporters at farm outside Fairhope: “They want to destroy Judge Roy Moore. You know why? They want to take your voice away.
“If they can destroy Roy Moore, they can destroy you. The days of taking it silently are over.”
Earlier in the day, Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell had said that Mr Moore would “immediately have an issue with the ethics committee” if he is elected on 12 December.
Yet a Republican National Committee official told AP the group had transferred $170,000 (£$127,000) to the Alabama Republican Party to boost Mr Moore’s campaign.
In October Mr Flake announced he would not seek re-election in an apparent protest against Mr Trump’s “reckless, outrageous and undignified behaviour”.
He said: “We must never meekly accept the daily sundering of our country – the personal attacks, the threats against principles, freedoms, and institutions, the flagrant disregard for truth or decency, the reckless provocations, most often for the pettiest and most personal reasons, reasons having nothing whatsoever to do with the fortunes of the people that we have all been elected to serve.”
Additional reporting by agencies