Most of the time, endorsements are welcome praise for hopeful presidential candidates. When the potential endorsement comes from one of the most controversial activist groups in all of U.S history, though, it's quite a different story. Amidst talk that the Ku Klux Klan supports Republican frontrunner Donald Trump's bid for the White House, Trump has refused to denounce the KKK, opting instead to act unfamiliar with white supremacist groups and leaders.
During an appearance on CNN on Sunday morning, anchor Jake Tapper asked Trump if he would condemn white supremacist groups and their affiliated leaders, particularly David Duke, a former grand wizard of the KKK. Duke has come out in support of Trump throughout the latter's campaign, but Trump has remained relatively quiet (for once). Most recently, Duke told an audience of supporters on Wednesday that voting for a candidate other than Trump should be considered "treason to your heritage." Although Trump acted confused and unfamiliar with the situation, Tapper made his question very clear to the controversial candidate:
Will you unequivocally condemn David Duke and say that you don't want his vote and that of other white supremacists in this election?
Trump offered, "I don't know anything about David Duke, OK? I don't know anything about what you're even talking about with white supremacy or white supremacists." Tapper then clarified that he was asking Trump about the KKK. Still, Trump stuck with his, "I don't know." Watch the clip for yourself here:
It's hard to imagine that Trump doesn't know anything about the situation with Duke or the KKK. I mean, let's be honest, he rattles off poll numbers and various endorsements like it's his sole purpose in life. He — or a member of his campaign — spends all day retweeting supporters and calling out haters via his Twitter profile. How could he have missed all the chatter about Duke's comment last week?
Even if he did somehow turn on a "no KKK" filter on social media (which I too would like to turn on if possible — Twitter, please advise), Trump has actually come face to face with the KKK issue in recent days. At a campaign rally in Oklahoma on Friday, Trump encountered an audience member wearing a white T-shirt with the words, "KKK endorses Trump," emblazoned on it. Trump paused his address to the audience to have security personnel remove the man from his audience.
Although removing the man from the audience may have been a show of good faith, Trump did not outright condemn the KKK at that rally, either. Moreover, he doesn't have a good answer for refusing to do so. It's definitely not a show of good faith to a majority of the country when the man who could be a nominee for president says he doesn't know anything about white supremacy and how it's connected to his campaign.
Image: Robert Kraychik/YouTube