Fox News Channel's "The O'Reilly Factor"
couldn't book Rep. Steve Scalise to talk about the recent flap over his addressing a white-supremacist group
in 2002, but former Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard David Duke, who heads the group to which Scalise spoke, was happy to appear and explain that he isn't a white supremacist.
Scalise has said he was unaware that the European-American Unity and Rights Organization (EURO), which was meeting at a Louisiana hotel, was founded by Duke or that it held neo-Nazi beliefs. He said he spoke to the group only about state tax policy, which he was doing to groups across the state at the time.
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Duke told O'Reilly that he couldn't confirm whether Scalise spoke, but said he was on the schedule. Duke was in Moscow at the time, researching a book on communism, and spoke to the conference by telephone hookup.
"I was never a white supremacist. I am not a white supremacist," Duke said, explaining that as a member of the Louisiana legislature he sponsored a bill against affirmative action, which he considered racial discrimination against white people.
He also said he left the Klan when he was in his 20s – earlier than did the late Democratic Sen. Robert Byrd, a hero of the left.
O'Reilly said that Byrd repudiated his own racist past and that the very title of Duke's group shows they are biased in favor of people with European backgrounds.
"Don't sit there and tell me . . . your organization is not looking out for the white Europeans," O'Reilly said.
"I am looking out for the rights of all Americans," Duke countered. "I believe European Americans shouldn't be discriminated against in jobs or scholarships or other ways."
"Don't tell me you are not trying to promote the cause of white people, because you are," O'Reilly said.
"I am, absolutely," Duke said. "I love my people and my heritage and I want to preserve my heritage like every people does."
"What does that mean?" O'Reilly asked.
"You don't know what European heritage is?" Duke asked. "You don't know what Mozart is and Bach?"
"We are all in it together, and skin color shouldn't matter," O'Reilly said.
Duke said the media is inflaming African-Americans against European-Americans, "but the real people who are oppressing and hurting all of us are the bankers who are robbing us blind."
Singling out Goldman Sachs, Duke said bankers "are putting us in these wars for Israel. That is hurting all of America."
At that, O'Reilly ended the interview.
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