David Duke said U.S. House Majority Whip Steve Scalise is a sellout and that he might challenge the Republican congressman in the next election.
“Steve Scalise, let me tell you something, this is the way I view it now: I mean this guy is a sellout. I mean he’s a sellout. He’s not David. He used to say that he was David Duke of course without the baggage, whatever that means,” Duke said on the Jim Engster Show Wednesday. Duke, who ran for governor in 1991, and is the former head of a Ku Klux Klan organization. The revelation on the Baton Rouge radio program reignited a firestorm among national bloggers about Scalise’s speech to a white nationalist group in 2002.
Over the Christmas break, Scalise was buffeted with calls to resign in the wake of a central Louisiana blogger’s post about the congressman speaking in 2002 to a group founded by Duke that espoused white nationalist views. Scalise was in the Louisiana House of Representatives when he spoke to European-American Unity and Rights Organization (EURO). Scalise apologized for the appearance and was supported by House Republicans leadership.
“He said specifically that he shouldn’t have gone to the European American Unity and Rights Organization,” Duke told Engster. “That he shouldn’t have done it, it was a terrible mistake.”
Duke said Scalise’s actions basically called 60 percent of his constituents “racist.”
“It wasn’t a klan meeting. It wasn’t any sort of a radical meeting. It was a meeting that said there was European American rights, right? So he is a sellout, right? Because, you know he can’t meet with members of his own district who have opinions like I have, but he meets with radical blacks who have total opposite political positions than him?”
Duke has kept a low profile for the past decade or so, but was quoted a lot in national and local media about the incident.
Scalise was not available for comment Thursday afternoon.