Donald Trump is working desperately to distance himself from former Ku Klux Klan grand wizard-turned U.S. Senate candidate David Duke. The reason? The David Duke campaign reportedly instituted a head-scratching promotional robocall in the last few days, reports Buzzfeed. In the call, which urges Louisiana voters to cast their vote for David Duke, the senatorial candidate also associates himself directly with Donald Trump, the GOP presidential nominee.
As Fox News reports, when it comes to David Duke and Donald Trump, Trump is trying to put as much space between his name and campaign and those of the former KKK leader as he possibly can. According to the Trump campaign, it had “no knowledge” that the David Duke campaign was creating the robocall or unleashing it on Louisiana voters.
Furthermore, the Trump campaign disavows any connection between Donald Trump and David Duke.
You can check out the David Duke robocall in its unedited entirety below.
According to Duke, if Louisiana voters want to help reshape Louisiana and the nation — according to David Duke’s vision for the future — they should vote for both Trump and Duke to help make it happen.
“It’s time to stand up and vote for Donald Trump for president and vote for me David Duke for the U.S. Senate.”
@CNN Trump can disavow all he wants but he will be taking their votes and support anyway. Nazis of a feather gather together— Ronald Elardo (@Whadyacallit) August 29, 2016
While the Donald Trump campaign has publicly “disavowed” any association with David Duke’s U.S. Senate campaign and the associated controversial robocall, the actual script of the robocall draws some significant and notable parallels between David Duke’s campaign platform and Trump’s.
“Unless massive immigration is stopped now, we’ll be outnumbered and outvoted in our own nation. It’s happening. We’re losing our gun rights, our free speech. We’re taxed to death. We’re losing our jobs and businesses to unfair trade. We’re losing our country. Look at the Super Bowl salute to the Black Panther cop killers.”
And in Donald Trump’s own tweeted words, too.
Immigration reform is all risk for the @GOP. Their base doesn’t want it and the 12M illegals will all vote Democrat.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 1, 2013
Sadly, the overwhelming amount of violent crime in our major cities is committed by blacks and hispanics-a tough subject-must be discussed.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 5, 2013
Look how bad it is getting! How much more crime, how many more shootings, will it take for African-Americans and Latinos to vote Trump=SAFE!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 29, 2016
Despite the similarities between their political platforms, Donald Trump and his campaign issued a full statement following the high-profile and controversial David Duke robocall situation. According to the Trump campaign, their candidate had denounced “any group or individual associated with a message of hate.” In fact, according to the Trump campaign’s statement, not only are racism and hate not tolerated by Donald Trump, they have no place in the Republican party.
“There is no place for this in the Republican Party or our country. We have no knowledge of these calls or any related activities, but strongly condemn and disavow.”
Even though Donald Trump and his campaign are doing everything they can to illustrate the intolerance that Trump has for racism and hate in general, and of David Duke in particular, this isn’t the first time the pair have been associated, either politically or on social media. Or both.
In July, Donald Trump famously tweeted some criticism of Hillary Clinton that featured an image of a six-pointed star and lots of cash floating in the background. There was immediate public backlash and accusations that the Trump tweet was anti-semitic. While simultaneously denying any anti-Jewish sentiment and defending himself, Donald Trump replaced the star in the tweet (which he said was supposed to represent a “sheriff’s star”) with a circle.
David Duke was among those who didn’t have a problem with Donald Trump’s anti-Hillary Tweet. In fact, as the Huffington Post reports, Duke retweeted it, modifying it only slightly to fit his white supremacist needs.
Hillery pocketed $600 K from Goldman Sachs for 3 hours of speeches. InsideGov.says top 7 donors are Zio-money Moguls pic.twitter.com/MVUhd4BdVu— David Duke (@DrDavidDuke) July 5, 2016
While Donald Trump has repeatedly tried to distance himself from David Duke, Duke has a history of publicly (and likely embarrassingly, at least for Trump) tweeting out support for the Republican presidential candidate. In fact, Duke famously tweeted out support of Donald Trump in the midst of the Republican National Convention.
Great Trump Speech, America First! Stop Wars! Defeat the Corrupt elites! Protect our Borders!, Fair Trade! Couldn't have said it better!— David Duke (@DrDavidDuke) July 22, 2016
In fact, taking a gander at Donald Trump’s RNC speech indicates that it appears that David Duke (or someone in the Duke campaign) was paying a lot of attention to what Donald Trump had to say when that infamous, but officially disavowed, robocall was scripted.
[Image via Joseph Sohm/Shutterstock]