On Sunday, Republican frontrunner Donald Trump refused to condemn the Ku Klux Klan or disavow his recent endorsement by former Klan Grand Wizard David Duke, reports NPR. Trump told CNN's Jake Tapper that he didn’t know enough about Duke to denounce the former KKK leader. Duke told his followers last week that voting for anyone other than Donald Trump would be “treason to your heritage.” When asked about the endorsement, Trump said, "I don't know anything about David Duke, okay? I don't know anything about what you're even talking about with white supremacy or white supremacist. So, I don't know. I don't know, did he endorse me or what's going on?" Trump said that he’d first need to “do research” on the groups in question before saying outright that he didn’t want their support. “Certainly I would disavow if I thought there was something wrong,” he said. “Honestly, I don’t know David Duke. I don’t believe I’ve ever met him. I’m pretty sure I didn’t meet him and I just don’t know anything about him.” The internet was quick to point out that Trump does know David Duke. In 2000, when Trump ended his presidential campaign, he cited Duke's participation in the Reform Party as a reason he no longer wanted the party's nomination. “The Reform Party now includes a Klansman, Mr. Duke; a neo-Nazi, Mr. Buchanan; and a communist, Ms. Fulani,” Trump said at the time, according to The New York Times. “This is not company I wish to keep.” And as recently as Friday, Trump disavowed Duke's support during a press conference where New Jersey Governor (and former presidential candidate) Chris Christie endorsed the billionaire businessman. Later on Sunday, Trump tweeted the moment when he said he disavowed the endorsement.
On Sunday, Senator Ted Cruz criticized Trump for dodging the David Duke issue. He said on Twitter, "Really sad. @realDonaldTrump you're better than this. We should all agree, racism is wrong, KKK is abhorrent." The KKK endorsement wasn't Trump's only controversy. While on NBC's Meet the Press on Sunday, Trump refused to distance himself from a quote he had retweeted from Italian fascist dictator Benito Mussolini.
Gawker announced that the account that first tweeted the quote — @ilduce2016 — was a bot it designed. Its purpose? To trick Trump into retweeting a line from a fascist dictator.
When asked if Trump knew that the quote was actually attributed to Mussolini, Trump said, "It's okay to know it was Mussolini. Look, Mussolini was Mussolini...It's a very good quote. It's a very interesting quote." When asked if he wanted to be associated with a fascist, Trump said, "No, I want to be associated with interesting quotes."