House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-La.) acknowledged earlier on Monday that he spoke at an event which was hosted by white nationalist leaders while he was serving as a state representative in 2002, but things are taking a turn for the worse.
You wouldn’t think they could get worse, but they can.
The founder of the group that featured Scalise as a speaker is David Duke, the former Ku Klux Klan leader who is now describing Scalise as “a fine family man” with whom he often agrees.
Scalise claims he had no idea he was speaking in front of a white supremacist group.
However, in 1999, then-state Rep. Scalise told a Washington newspaper that he agreed with many of Duke’s “conservative” views.
Duke spoke with the Huffington Post and it turns out that the white supremacist likes Scalise, too. It’s a mutual admiration society of sorts.
The Huffington Post reports:
…he doesn’t remember speaking with Scalise before the conference. (He later told The Washington Post that Scalise was invited to the event by two of his longtime associates, Howie Farrell and Kenny Knight.) But it would have been nothing out of the ordinary for a Louisiana Republican at the time, Duke claimed.
“I literally defeated the Republican sitting governor of that state,” said Duke, referring to the 1991 race in which he forced a runoff against Democratic candidate Edwin Edwards. “I had a huge amount of Republican support.”
…Duke claimed Monday that within Louisiana, he was still well respected. As late as 2000, he pointed out, he sat on his local district’s Republican Party executive committee.
…He called Scalise “a good person,” with whom he agrees on many issues.
Oh, it gets even worse for Scalise.
An article, which was written by John Mercurio, detailed a special election for the U.S. House seat in Louisiana’s 1st Congressional District.
Duke was considering running, and Mercurio spoke to Scalise, a potential rival of the former Klansman.
Another potential candidate, state Rep. Steve Scalise (R), said he embraces many of the same “conservative” views as Duke, but is far more viable.
“The novelty of David Duke has worn off,” said Scalise. “The voters in this district are smart enough to realize that they need to get behind someone who not only believes in the issues they care about, but also can get elected. Duke has proven that he can’t get elected, and that’s the first and most important thing.”
A Scalise spokesperson did not immediately return The Huffington Post’s request for comment on Duke’s remarks and the Roll Call story.
Scalise is a piece of work.
2008: Steve Scalise implied that the guy he was running against was Muslim (3rd circle)- I still have this flier. pic.twitter.com/Hxl5OM4FcA
— Neal Boyd (@grimcity) June 19, 2014
Huffpo notes, “Scalise isn’t the only House Republican plagued by ties to white supremacist groups. Rep. Daniel Webster (R-Fla.), who was elected to Congress in 2010, touted an endorsement from Christian conservative activist David Barton, who twice gave speeches to white supremacist groups. Barton has also advocated for removing civil rights leaders from Texas textbooks.”
As much as Scalise tries to deny it, even RedState editor, Erick Erickson isn’t buying it.”How the hell does somebody show up at a David Duke organized event in 2002 and claim ignorance?” Erickson writes.
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