In the span of just two days, Donald Trump quickly disavowed former KKK leader David Duke's citing of Trump's policies in his announcement of a bid for the U.S. Sentate, while a top Trump campaign surrogate apologized for a retweet blaming Jews for a recent Wikileaks publication that has forced the resignation of the DNC chairwoman. Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, a surrogate for Donald Trump’s Republican presidential campaign, retweeted an anti-Semitic post and then apologized, saying it was in error.
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The tweet, from a user called Saint Bibiana, alleged that Jews were blaming the former Soviet Union for leaks that were published recently from internal Democratic National Committee emails.
“CNN implicated,” reads the tweet sent Sunday. “‘The USSR is to blame!’ Not anymore, Jews. Not anymore.”
Retweeting on Sunday, Flynn wrote, “The corrupt Democratic machine will do and say anything to get #NeverHillary into power. This is new low.”
Soon afterward, Flynn tweeted that he had meant to retweet a link from CNN and apologized for his earlier tweet.
“The earlier retweet was a mistake,” he wrote. “My sincerest apologies.”
WikiLeaks, which published the DNC leak, also appeared to tweet an anti-Semitic message on Saturday. Addressing critics of the leak, the group’s Twitter feed displayed a post that read: “Tribalist symbol for establishment climbers? Most of our critics have 3 (((brackets around their names))) & have black-rim glasses. Bizarre.” The tweet was later removed.
In recent weeks, Jews on Twitter have placed the triple brackets around their names to mock and undermine an anti-Semitic way of identifying Jews online.
Also Sunday, Trump said he “guessed” he would vote for a Democrat to stop white supremacist David Duke from being elected to office and added that he “rebuked” Duke, a former grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan. Duke is running for the U.S. Senate in Louisiana and supports Trump.
“I guess, depending on who is the Democrat, but the answer would be yes,” Trump said on NBC’s Meet The Press, responding to the question about Duke. “Rebuked. Is that OK? Rebuked, done.”
On Saturday, after Duke announced his Senate candidacy, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus tweeted that “David Duke & his hateful bigotry have no place in the Republican Party & the RNC will never support his candidacy under any circumstance.”
Duke said he's espoused principles for years that are similar to the themes Republicans are now supporting in Donald Trump's campaign, on issues such as immigration and trade.
He said Americans are "embracing the core issues I have fought for my entire life."
Earlier, his announcement had appeared on his website, nudging down links to pages decrying "Zionist terror" and the "Jewish Supremacist Role in anti-European Movements."
Duke, 66, was associated with neo-Nazi groups as a student at LSU. He was grand wizard of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan in the 1970s and headed a "white unity group" - the National Association for the Advancement of White People - in the 1980s. He is registered with the GOP, but Republicans at the state and federal level quickly denounced his Senate bid.