David Duke: Former KKK Leader, Trump Supporter Plans to Run for Congress

UPDATE: 12:12 p.m. ET July 22, 2016

The day after Trump accepted the Republican presidential nomination, David Duke, a registered Republican and former leader of the Ku Klux Klan, confirmedon his website Friday that he will run for U.S. Senate in Louisiana to fill a seat that will be vacated by Republican Sen. David Vitter.

Duke said in a video,”I’m proud to announce my candidacy for the United States Senate.I believe in equal rights for all and respect for all Americans. However, what makes me different is I also demand respect for the rights and heritage of European Americans.”

He also stated, “We must stop the massive immigration and the ethnic cleansing of the people whose forefathers made America.”

ORIGINAL STORY: July 13, 2016

“I’d be the only person in Congress openly defending the rights and the heritage of European Americans,” Duke said.

By Sheryl Estrada

Former Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard David Duke announced he intends to challenge Louisiana Republican Congressman Steve Scalise for his seat.

He tweeted the announcement on Tuesday:

Demonstrations began taking place across the country in response to the police-related deaths of Alton Sterling on July 5 in Louisiana and Philando Castile,July 6, in Minnesota. A lone gunman shot and killed five policeofficers and injured seven on Thursday following a protest in Dallas. Duke said the officers being killed made him consider a run for congress.

“I don’t take any satisfaction in the fact that I was right, but I have been right,” he told The Daily Beast. “Unless European Americans stand up, they are going to lose everything they care about in this country.

“There are millions of people across the country who would like to have me in the Congress. I’d be the only person in Congress openly defending the rights and the heritage of European Americans. We are on the offensive today. There’s no more defenses.”

Scalise’s vote to ban Confederate flags in Veterans Administration cemeteries has also troubled Duke.

Related Story: Confederate Flag Raised Again at South Carolina State Capitol

“[Scalise] crawled on his hands and his knees to the Black caucus. This should not stand,” Duke said.

He will make a final decision on running in the next few days, as the ballot deadline is July 22. Duke previously ran for governor of Louisiana in 1991 and Congress in 1999.

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich is a contenderin the race to become Trump’s vice presidential pick. But Duke, angered that Gingrich recently said white people don’t understand what it’s like for Blacks routinely subjected to discrimination, thinks he would be a better VP pick.

“I had a perfect Republican voting record,” Duke told The Daily Beast. “If [Trump] had me as a VP he would have a life insurance policy.”

The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) refers to the KKK, founded in 1865, as “the most infamous and oldest of American hate groups.” Duke founded The Knights of the Ku Klux Klan in 1975. According to the SPLC, the organization has “attempted to put a ‘kinder, gentler’ face on the Klan, courting media attention and attempting to portray itself as a modern ‘white civil rights’ organization. But beneath that veneer lurks the same bigoted rhetoric.”

Duke for Trump

On his radio show in February, Duke referred to the Republican Party as an “overwhelming party of European Americans” and said he supported Trump. He encouraged his audience to do the same.

Related Story: Trump Fears Alienating White Supremacist Voters

“I do support [Trump’s] candidacy, and I support voting for him as a strategic action. I hope he does everything we hope he will do,” he said.

“When this show’s over, go out, call the Republican Party, but call Donald Trump’s headquarters, volunteer. They’re screaming for volunteers. Go in there, you’re gonna meet people who are going to have the same kind of mindset that you have.”

Duke’s radio show on Feb. 24:

Initially, Trump failed to distance himself from white supremacists, including Duke, who endorsed him. He eventually disavowed Duke’s support.

However, a Quinnipiac University poll published on June 29 revealed that 61 percent of American voters feel “the 2016 election has increased the level of hatred and prejudice in the U.S.” Of that 61 percent, 67 percent blame Trump and 16 percent blame Hillary Clinton, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee.

Latest News

Juneteenth National Independence Day Act bill signing

House Passes — and Biden Signs — New Bill To Make Juneteenth a Federal Holiday

The U.S. House of Representatives has voted to designate Juneteenth as a federal holiday, one day after the Senate unanimously voted for its passage. President Biden quickly signed the bill into law on June 17, making this year’s Juneteenth the first national recognition of Black Independence Day in the United…

LGBTQ protection in schools

US Education Department Issues Statement Confirming Title IX Protects LGBTQ Students Against Discrimination

Following an executive order from President Joe Biden directing federal agencies to defend LGBTQ students against discrimination, the Education Department has issued an official statement saying that Title IX does indeed ensure equal protection for LGBTQ students under federal law. Jo Yurcaba of NBC News reported that the Department of…

Texas Governor Greg Abbott

Texas Governor Approves Bill Banning Discussions of Race and Racism Within State’s Schools

Texas lawmakers continue to astound with the number of racist, transphobic laws they are willing to try to write into law.  In the last few months alone, we’ve seen Texas lawmakers draft legislation that would penalize parents who support and help their transgender children access gender-affirming care with jail time…

Georgia Power, Georgia Power Foundation Invested More Than $20 Million To Help Meet Community Challenges in 2020

Originally published at southerncompany.com. Southern Company ranked No. 20 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2021.   Georgia Power and the Georgia Power Foundation today released their annual Citizenship Report highlighting how the company, its employees and retirees gave back to Georgia communities last year, helping to build…

Toyota Financial Services Issues New Asset-Backed Green Bond, Highlighting Toyota’s Ongoing Commitment to Sustainability

Originally published at pressroom.toyota.com. Toyota Motor North America ranked No. 7 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2021.   Toyota Financial Services (TFS) issued its latest Asset-Backed Green Bond, reinforcing the company’s longstanding commitment to the sale of environmentally friendly vehicles. Net proceeds from the $1.6…

ADP Recognized as a Customers’ Choice in 2021 Gartner Peer Insights ‘Voice of the Customer’

Originally published at mediacenter.adp.com. ADP ranked No. 8 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2021.   Industry analyst firm Gartner recognized ADP as a Customers’ Choice with category distinctions in Midsize Enterprises and North America in its 2021 Gartner Peer Insights ‘Voice of the Customer’: Cloud HCM Suites…

Cigna building

Cigna and New York Life Expand Eligibility for ‘Brave of Heart Fund’ Grants Supporting Families of Healthcare Workers Who Lost Their Lives in the Fight Against COVID-19

Originally published at cigna.com. Cigna ranked No. 33 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2021.   On June 17, the foundations of New York Life and Cigna announced that the Brave of Heart Fund, which provides monetary grants to the families of heroic health care workers…