Donald Trump is being criticized for this recent interview on CNN with Jake Tapper. Tapper repeatedly asked Trump if he would denounce David Duke and the KKK:
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The interview came after Duke announced he was backing Trump. Although Trump repeatedly mentioned Duke’s name, he refused to denounce him noting that he needed to do more research.
Trump later blamed it on a bad earpiece and said he was not able to hear Tapper’s question clearly. Days later, Trump went on ABC’s “Good Morning America” and denounced the group.
“I disavowed them every time I speak to somebody virtually, and you know, they just keep it going, they keep it going,” Trump told ABC.
Trump also told ABC “there’s nobody that’s done so much for equality as I have”. He mentioned his hotels being open to everybody.
Trump is receiving criticism from members of the Republican party citing his failure to immediately distance himself from Duke. House Speaker Paul Ryan was one of the critics. The Washington Posts quoted Ryan publicly addressing the matter:
When I see something that runs counter to who we are as a party and as a country, I will speak up, so today I want to be very clear about something. If a person wants to be the nominee of the Republican Party, there can be no evasion and no games. They must reject any group or cause that is built on bigotry. This party does not prey on people’s prejudices. We appeal to their highest ideals. This is the party of Lincoln,” Ryan said.
Both competing candidates and GOP members have been more aggressive in their attacks on Trump in light of his recent success. He headed into Super Tuesday with a large lead in the delegate count and was projected to win nearly every Super Tuesday state.