Trump: Pence Was ‘Very Rough’ on David Duke
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump on Sunday defended his running mate, Mike Pence, for refusing to label former KKK leader David Duke as “deplorable.”
“He was very rough on David Duke, but he didn’t want to fall into her word,” Trump said in an interview on the “Media Buzz with Howard Kurtz” program. “He didn’t want to use her word because no matter what he said, he would have been criticized.”
Pence came under fire last week for refusing to use the term “deplorable” during an interview with CNN. “There are some supporters of Donald Trump and Mike Pence who ― David Duke, for example, some other white nationalists ― who would fit into that category of deplorables. Right?” CNN host Wolf Blitzer asked, referring to Clinton’s remarks over the weekend that half of Donald Trump supporters can be put into a “basket of deplorables.”
“Donald Trump has denounced David Duke repeatedly. We don’t want his support and we don’t want the support of people who think like him,” Pence replied. When pressed if he’d call Duke “deplorable,” Pence said, “No, I’m not in the name calling business.”
Trump said he was “very, very impressed” with Pence for refusing the take the bait. “He was very, very tough on David Duke, I can tell you that.”
Meanwhile, Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) on Saturday said Trump was “a man with a dark and ugly soul” as she campaigned for the Democratic presidential ticket in Columbus, Ohio. “Trump has more support from the Aryan nation and the Ku Klux Klan than he does from leaders of his own party,” Warren said.
Earlier Saturday, Clinton’s primary challenger Bernie Sanders asserted, “The cornerstone of Donald Trump’s campaign is bigotry.”