Trump, now claiming ignorance, once cited David Duke for why he left Reform Party in 2000

The third-party pasts of Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump have been brought up intermittently as they seek this year’s major-party nominations. In Sander’s case, it was the radicalism of his 1970s Liberty Union platform that included abolition of the CIA and total rejection of all gun control laws, and his independent campaigns in the 1980s against Democratic nominees. Donald Trump’s latest headline-grabber, was his refusal to disavow David Duke’s endorsement of him. Duke is the notorious former Klansman and Louisiana state legislator, who ran a campaign for Governor that inspired the memorable (and successful) bumper sticker: “Vote for the crook, it’s important.” in reference to Duke’s ethically-challenged Democratic opponent.

Reason notes, however, that Trump was at one time more familiar with Duke. He explicitly cited David Duke’s involvement as a reason why he left the Reform Party in 2000, after briefly seeking its nomination, which went to Pat Buchanan that year. From Reason:

But Trump certainly knew who David Duke was in 2000. As The New York Times reported at the time, Trump declined to be a presidential candidate on the Reform Party ticket explicitly because of Duke’s Klan connections:

Mr. Trump painted a fairly dark picture of the Reform Party in his statement, noting the role of Mr. Buchanan, along with the roles of David Duke, a former leader of the Ku Klux Klan, and Lenora Fulani, the former standard-bearer of the New Alliance Party and an advocate of Marxist-Leninist politics.

“The Reform Party now includes a Klansman, Mr. Duke, a neo-Nazi, Mr. Buchanan, and a communist, Ms. Fulani,” he said in his statement. “This is not company I wish to keep.” [via Justin Green]

Read the rest here.

29 thoughts on “Trump, now claiming ignorance, once cited David Duke for why he left Reform Party in 2000

  1. natural born citizen

    “Journalism” isn’t Reason’s goal when it comes to Trump.

    Just agitprop on behalf of their globalist funders.

  2. Pingback: IPR: Trump, now claiming ignorance, once cited David Duke for why he left Reform Party in 2000 | American Third Party Report

  3. Andy Craig Post author

    “Trump already disavowed the Duke endorsement on Friday.”

    If you read the article, they note that, and that after that he suddenly forgot who David Duke was, what the Klan is, and said he couldn’t denounce either unless he found out more about them.

  4. Robert Capozzi

    Perhaps Trump is choking. We can only hope so.

    I’d like to see him completely meltdown about now.

  5. William Saturn

    “If you read the article, they note that, and that after that he suddenly forgot who David Duke was, what the Klan is, and said he couldn’t denounce either unless he found out more about them.”

    Looks like they just added it. It wasn’t there before.

  6. William Saturn

    They also should change their title since it still says “Repeatedly Refuses to Disavow Support” when they now have been informed that he had already disavowed support.

  7. William Saturn

    Also note that the writer previously claimed Trump’s Duke comments made were in 1990, when, in fact, they were made in 2000. The writer had to note this correction because he already tweeted the wrong year. This was a very sloppy article and poorly researched; lazy “journalism”.

  8. William Saturn

    Also, Trump did not ever claim he did not know who David Duke is. He said he did not know anything about Duke or White Supremacists endorsing him. This can easily be discovered through context, but this hit piece takes everything out of context.

    I really wish Andy Craig would have done some additional research when he decided to post this article. And why drag Jesse Ventura into this? There are many pictures of Trump available from 2000 without Ventura.

  9. Chuck Moulton

    William Saturn wrote:

    I really wish Andy Craig would have done some additional research when he decided to post this article. And why drag Jesse Ventura into this? There are many pictures of Trump available from 2000 without Ventura.

    You need to keep in mind that Andy is in the tank for Gary Johnson and seeks any opportunity to trash anyone who could conceivably run against Johnson for the LP nomination (such as Ventura). I hope that clarifies things.

  10. steve m

    “Better that Trump should meldown after he gets the Republican nomination. Timing is everything!”

    Timing is everything but I would like to see one bitter and derisive floor fight at the Republican Convention before Trump gets the nomination and then melts down.

  11. Carol Moore

    Don’t you guys watch the news? This sunday AM he was on denying he knew who David Duke or the KKK was and asking for a list of groups he should investigate. After all hell broke loose throughout the media he tweeted that he disavowed KKK/Duke. Either he’s under a lot of pressure from supremacists or he’s SENILE or maybe his father was pro-KKK when he was arrested during a KKK riot in 1927… https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/02/28/in-1927-donald-trumps-father-was-arrested-after-a-klan-riot-in-queens/?postshare=7381456690910368&tid=ss_tw

  12. William Saturn

    Wow you sure are a piece of work. He disavowed on Friday then went on the Sunday talk shows and said he knew no details about the circumstances surrounding the endorsement.

  13. Bondurant

    It doesn’t matter anymore. Trump could start reading the nutritional information off of a box of Hot Pockets and people will eat it up. People are so pissed off at politicians it does not matter what he says or does. The irony, of course, is that he’s more like Hillary than his supporters want to believe and a part of me still believes he’s working for the Clinton’s.

    I love that the GOP is scrambling at the prospect of collapse but I wish Trump’s supporters would pay more attention to what is actually going on.

  14. Andy Craig Post author

    Wow, obviously touched a nerve with somebody who’s inordinately fond Duke, Trump, or both.

    The picture is the same one I grabbed from all the other articles we’ve posted about Trump’s Reform Party days. I posted it here for the same reason I’ve posted other Trump and Sanders articles: because some aspect of their third-party connection was getting media coverage.

    The idea that I posted the pic with Ventura because I’m “in the tank for Johnson” is just more insulting nonsense from “some person named” Chuck, as he prefers to put it. I don’t even think Ventura is going to run, and the party chair has confirmed that he’d be ineligible if he sticks to insistence of not joining the party. I certainly don’t see him as any sort of threat to win the nomination. And it’s relevant, because Ventura was actually involved in the same controversy at the time, leading his Minnesota party to disaffiliate with the Buchanan-controlled national party over much the same complaints Trump had.

  15. jim

    Even children can grasp the concept of “reverse psychology”. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reverse_psychology And yes, the KKK are presumably also aware of this. They know if they openly praise Candidate A, people will use that endorsement and use it to criticize the same Candidate, or perhaps view it indirectly as a reason to support Candidate B.
    Do we have any reason to believe that the KKK isn’t intending to use one of these techniques, rather than genuinely believing Trump is the best candidate?

  16. Carol Moore

    Now Trump says he couldn’t hear Saturday’s questions because of his ear piece. Sure he is right that asking the same “gotcha” question over and over looking for a disavowal is a pain in the neck, but he should have said that Saturday, not excused himself Monday AM saying he had no idea who was being discussed because of his ear piece.

    KKK and Duke (who now says he’s just a heritage person, not a racist) want the publicity and want to send a message to its supporters they are “winning”. They avoided a direct endorsement hoping there’d be no disavowal, but even Trump isn’t so stupid he wouldn’t disavow them when it became necessary.

    The important point is that Trump is unleashing the suppressed racism of a lot of white people which also will incur it in blacks and Latinos. Racism is bad and should be suppressed. And it shouldn’t be encouraged to jack people up in order to win elections. Trump WILL suppress civil liberties and free speech and maybe go to war with anyone who doesn’t kiss his ass, no matter how noninterventionist he talks. (Remember GW Bush’s “humble foreign policy”?) Anyone who doesn’t realize he’s a petty tyrant is truly blind.

  17. Dave

    I do feel some bit of empathy for Trump here, if only because he already disavowed the support so why ask him again? No one seems to be asking Cruz why he’s just fine standing on stage and receiving the endorsement of a pastor who favors stoning homosexuals, for example. It seems to be a double standard.

    Don’t think this will hurt him though. His supporters are already bringing up Jeremiah Wright and Obama and complaining about media bias. And the Sessions endorsement more or less reset the media coverage to something more positive to him.

  18. natural born citizen

    1. The KKK hasn’t endorsed Trump
    2. Tapper didn’t ask Trump about the KKK, he asked him about unnamed “groups.”

  19. jim

    “The Communist Party USA endorsed Obama in 2008 and 2012. Was he asked to disavow them?”

    Excellent observation. But also, let’s remember Obama’s ‘disavowal’ of Rev. Jeremiah Wright, in 2008, despite having attended that church since 1992. Obama hadn’t disavowed Wright earlier. This makes me wonder: Could that 2008 event have amounted to a protective first-strike by Obama, knowing that Wright’s positions and hateful rhetoric over the previous 16 years would be scrutinized?

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