One of the age-old techniques used by presidential campaigns to win public favor is highlighting some of the campaign’s more notable supporters. Hilary Clinton has Beyonce, Ben Carson has Kid Rock, Bernie Sanders has Susan Sarandon, and now the 2016 Donald Trump campaign has David Duke, reknowned racist and former grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan. Unfortunately for Trump, Duke’s endorsement may do his campaign more harm than good.
NY Daily News reports that Duke took to the airwaves on his weekly David Duke Radio Program on Wednesday to sing Trump’s praises.
— ATTN: (@attn) February 26, 2016
“I’m not saying I endorse everything about Trump, in fact I haven’t formally endorsed him. But I do support his candidacy, and I support voting for him as a strategic action. I hope he does everything we hope he will do,” David Duke said of the Donald Trump campaign during the 25-minute program, which is available to stream on BuzzFeed.
“And I am telling you that it is your job now to get active. Get off your duff. Get off your rear end that’s getting fatter and fatter for many of you everyday on your chairs. When this show’s over, go out, call the Republican Party, but call Donald Trump’s headquarters, volunteer. They’re screaming for volunteers.
He also pointed out that the 2016 Donald Trump campaign supporters and Ku Klux Klan members tend to be birds of a feather.
“Go in there, you’re gonna meet people who are going to have the same kind of mindset that you have.”
Duke went on to tear down the campaigns of some of Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign republican party competitors, Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio.
“Voting for these people, voting against Donald Trump at this point is really treason to your heritage,” he said.
Duke also claimed that Marco Rubio supports “racism against whites” by agreeing with #BlackLivesMatter and that Ted Cruz is a government saboteur who wants to trick the American people into legalizing previously illegal immigration.
— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) February 25, 2016
Donald Trump has, throughout his campaign, heralded himself as the man who can “make America great again” with his strict immigration reform policies, and Duke agreed in his broadcast that America has become a lesser nation “over the last 50 years” because European Americans have become less of a majority than they were. But although the two men may be of the same school of thought, Duke has said that Trump speaks “a lot more radically” than the former KKK leader.
David has also spoken out favorably about the 2016 Trump campaign’s gung-ho, no-nonsense approach to reform in the past. Last August, for instance, the David Duke Radio Program broadcast an episode in which he noted Trump’s way with words.
“I praise the fact that [Donald Trump]’s come out on the immigration issue. I’m beginning to get the idea that he’s a good salesman. That he’s an entrepreneur and he has a good sense of what people want to hear, what they want to buy. He has really said some incredibly great things recently. So whatever his motivation, I don’t give a damn. I really like the fact that he’s speaking out on this greatest immediate threat to the American people.”
Duke is far from the only white supremacist source to back Donald Trump’s candidacy, though; during the past year alone, Trump endorsements have come from the American Nazi party, various Neo-Nazi websites, white nationalist political parties, and even “redneck” ex-athlethes who support white power.
After Duke’s Donald Trump shoutout, a civil rights group called the Anti-Defamation League urged Donald to publicly sever ties between himself and an organization as widely despised as the Ku Klux Klan in the best interest of the 2016 Trump campaign.
“It is time for him to come out firmly against these bigoted views and the people that espouse them,” said the organization’s chair.
— ADL (@ADL_National) February 25, 2016
However, Donald Trump has still not made any statement regarding the KKK at all, remaining “uncharacteristically silent,” reports NY Daily News. Could it be that Trump does not want to alienate white supremacists, a significant portion of his constituency?
[Photo by Jonathan Moore/Getty Images and Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for USO of Metropolitan New York]