Prompted repeatedly to denounce the Ku Klux Klan in the wake of former grand wizard David Duke's endorsement of him, Donald Trump steadfastly refused Sunday on CNN's State of the Union, telling host Jake Tapper that, "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." Pressed further, he responded: "I have to look at the group. I mean, 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." Duke had said on his radio show that voting against Trump would be "treason to your heritage."
But media outlets including NPR are quick to point out that Trump distanced himself from the Reform Party in 2000 because it "now includes a Klansman, Mr. Duke, a neo-Nazi, Mr. [Pat] Buchanan, and a communist, Ms. [Lenora] Fulani. This is not company I wish to keep." Trump also took some questions over retweeting a tweet from a Benito Mussolini parody account that read: " @ ilduce2016 : "It is better to live one day as a lion than 100 years as a sheep." – @realDonaldTrump #MakeAmericaGreatAgain," reports the New York Times. "It's OK to know it was Mussolini. Look, Mussolini was Mussolini," Trump said, per NPR. "It's a very good quote. It's a very interesting quote." Over at Gawker, Alex Pareene is crowing about the @ilduce2016 account—which he says a fellow editor set up last year to try to trick Trump into retweeting a Mussolini quote.