Former KKK Leader David Duke, who has re-emerged in the national headlines after it was revealed that House Majority Whip Steve Scalise spoke at a Duke white supremacist conference 12 years ago, has threatened other Republican politicians who are coming out against Scalise.
“Why is Scalise being singled out? I don’t know,” Duke said in an interview with fusion.net. “He was just going [to the EURO conference], obviously, to tell voters about some of his initiatives on some tax matters. That’s what it’s all about. And I think it’s insane, this whole process.”
Then Duke issued this threat to other Republicans who might be inclined to criticize the third highest ranking Republican in the House:
“If Scalise is going to be crucified — if Republicans want to throw Steve Scalise to the woods, then a lot of them better be looking over their shoulders,” Duke warned.
Duke’s group, called the European-American Unity and Rights Organization, is well-known to the Southern Poverty Law Center as a white nationalist hate group founded in 2000 by Duke, the controversial former Louisiana state representative.
Scalise’s appearance was first reported on Sunday by a Louisiana political blogger named Lamar White Jr., who found a number of posts on Stormfront, one of the original white supremacist websites, describing Scalise’s appearance at the 2002 EURO gathering
Scrambling to repair the damage as some members of Congress are calling for him to be demoted from Majority Whip, Scalise blamed his speaking appearance at the EURO conference on the fact that he only had one staff member—and he said he didn’t know the conference thrown by Duke, an extremely prominent figure in Scalise’s part of Louisiana, was a white supremacist conference.
But no one seems to be buying his story.
Mia Love, the former Utah mayor who is about to be sworn in as the only Black female Republican member of Congress, sounded disturbed by all the calls asking her to comment on Scalise.
“It is difficult for me to comment on Rep. Scalise’ speaking engagement from 12 years ago,” she said in a statement. “I have not spoken with him about that particular day. All I can say is that, from my experience, the majority whip has been extremely helpful to me and all of my colleagues.”
In his comments, Duke said that he is very well-connected with national politicians and said the depictions of him as racist are a product of the media’s “zionist” and “tribalist” mentality.
Duke said comments by politicians piling on Scalise is “all bullsh*t.” He said he’s shocked at the “insane” amount of attention he and Scalise are getting.
He said he’s “grown up” since his days as a Grand Wizard of the Klan. “And I know who the real racists are.”