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The story goes that Donald Trump's father was once jailed for participating in a Ku Klux Klan rally in New York city:
From New York Daily News
Fred Trump Sr. was among seven men arrested following a May 30, 1927 brawl between members of the KKK and the New York Police Department, according to The Washington Post, which unearthed news articles from the June 1, 1927 edition of The New York Times.
. . . The fights that broke out in Queens occurred after 1,000 KKK members dressed in white hooded robes marched through the Jamaica neighborhood. According to The Post, the address of the elder Trump from the arrest report matched the Jamaica address where he lived, according to a 1930 Census.
But The Donald has often denied the story, and his denial continued this week as famous Klansman David Duke endorsed Trump for President of the United States. When asked about it, Trump denied knowing who David Duke is, or the fact he has always been connected to the Klan.
David Duke Biography on Wikipedia
Duke's Endorsement on Facebook
CNN's Jake Tapper gave Trump several chances to distance himself from Duke:
Quotes from Trump via Huffington Post:
Just so you understand. 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. So I don't know. I mean, I don't know -- did he endorse me or what's going on? Because I know nothing about David Duke. I know nothing about white supremacists. And so you're asking me a question that I'm supposed to be talking about people that I know nothing about.
Well, I have to look at the group. I don’t know what group you’re talking about. You wouldn’t want me to condemn a group that I know nothing about. I’d have to look. If you would send me a list of the groups, I will do research on them and certainly I would disavow if I thought there was something wrong.
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 problem is that Trump clearly knew about David Duke, as does anyone who was alive and reading the news in the late 1980s when Duke served in the Louisiana House, then ran for several offices including Louisiana Governor and Senator, and even President of the U.S. It was a huge controversy at the time for anyone to be so openly proud of Klan affiliation, and David Duke has not changed over the years.
But Trump had mentioned Duke and KKK many years before:
Rubio: "There is no room in the Republican Party for members of the Ku Klux Klan or for racists like David Duke."https://t.co/xYeiR6pOSl— CSPAN (@cspan) February 29, 2016
But according to Trump, when Tapper asked him the questions he was deaf due to a "bad earpiece" he was wearing during the CNN interview. Yes, being unable to hear Jake Tapper's question is now his excuse for losing three separate opportunities to deny any association with the KKK, and he said he had disavowed the whole thing in a press conference with Chris Christie the day before in Texas:
From NY Daily News:
“I'm sitting in a house in Florida with a very bad earpiece that they gave me, and you could hardly hear what he was saying. But what I heard was various groups, and I don't mind disavowing anybody, and I disavowed David Duke and I disavowed him the day before at a major news conference, which is surprising because he was at the major news conference, CNN was at the major news conference, and they heard me very easily disavow David Duke," Trump said Monday on NBC’s “Today” show.
"Now, I go, and I sit down again, I have a lousy earpiece that is provided by them, and frankly, he talked about groups," Trump said, referring to the question from CNN's Jake Tapper. "He also talked about groups. And I have no problem with disavowing groups, but I'd at least like to know who they are. It would be very unfair to disavow a group, Matt, if the group shouldn't be disavowed. I have to know who the groups are. But I disavowed David Duke."
“Now, if you look on Facebook, right after that, I also disavowed David Duke. When we looked at it, and looked at the question, I disavowed David Duke," he said. "So I disavowed David Duke all weekend long, on Facebook, on Twitter and obviously, it’s never enough. Ridiculous.”
As I stated at the press conference on Friday regarding David Duke- I disavow. pic.twitter.com/OIXFKPUlz2— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 28, 2016
Hold on, my earpiece is stuck in my ass. pic.twitter.com/pl7Cr76yzb— jamie (@gnuman1979) March 1, 2016
Of course many on the right took up for Trump because why shouldn't they have the right to praise the Klan and be endorsed in return? Right? Amirite? And besides that - blame Obama, blame Hillary - they are racists too!
Obama could have written this. https://t.co/JQpNDSYYHY— Tucker Carlson (@TuckerCarlson) March 1, 2016
Gov. Huckabee: They pushed Trump into committing to the party, but now they won’t stand behind him. I’m sick of D.C. pic.twitter.com/A4ORIshE7r— Trump's Got My Vote (@veganvecoh) February 29, 2016