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With Trump Candidacy a Vehicle for White Nationalists, No Room for GOP Equivocation

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Republicans Like Paul Ryan, Mike Coffman, and Rob Portman Can’t Have it Both Ways

In a story titled, “Top Nazi Leader: Trump Will Be A ‘Real Opportunity’ For White Nationalists,” Peter Holley of the Washington Post highlights how the white nationalist movement is viewing Trump’s candidacy as an opportunity to mainstream ideas that had previously been restricted to the fringes of our society:

“The effort to plant the seeds of white nationalism in the political mainstream, where they might blossom into pro-white political coalitions that appeal to a broader swath of Caucasian voters, will not be easy, according to the chairman of the American Nazi Party. But Rocky Suhayda thinks there is one political figure who presents a ‘real opportunity’ to lessen the load. Who is it? Donald Trump, the Republican nominee for president.

‘Now, if Trump does win, okay, it’s going to be a real opportunity for people like white nationalists, acting intelligently to build upon that, and to go and start — you know how you have the black political caucus and what not in Congress and everything — to start building on something like that,’ Suhayda declared on his radio program last month.

…’We have a wonderful OPPORTUNITY here folks, that may never come again, at the RIGHT time,’ Suhayda wrote, according to BuzzFeed. ‘Donald Trump’s campaign statements, if nothing else, have SHOWN that ‘our views’ are NOT so ‘unpopular’ as the Political Correctness crowd have told everyone they are!’”

Similarly, Michelle Cottle writes a new story for The Atlantic titled, “How Donald Trump Opened the Way For David Duke’s Return”:

“…Duke is desperate to link himself to Trump. He specifically credited Trump for his return to politics, claiming that he was the originator of many of the ‘America-first’ policy ideas Trump is pushing. Duke’s campaign website features videos with titles like ‘Duke & Trump: The Supreme Court Does Matter’ and ‘Never Trump & Never Duke Exposed as GOP Traitors.’ And Duke’s Twitter feed is a scary mish-mash of ravings about anti-white bigotry and the decline of ‘Euro Americans,’ broadsides against more mainstream Republicans, and lamentations about the mistreatments and misrepresentations Trump has allegedly suffered.

In an August 6 tweet, Duke charged, ‘Never Trump traitors at the lagop.com are trying to fix the election & keep me out of the debates. Donate today.’ In an August 5 interview on NPR, Duke claimed that his internal polling shows that he’ll carry 75 to 80 percent of Trump voters.”

According to Lynn Tramonte, Deputy Director of America’s Voice, “What’s at stake in this election goes far beyond partisan politics, and straight to the type of America we aspire to be. In 2016, we have a candidate for president from one of the two main political parties who is both an inspiration and a vehicle for unapologetic racists. There is no middle ground here; you either stand with Donald Trump and the ugly forces he gives voice to, or you do not. This is a moment of truth for Republicans attempting to have it both ways, from Speaker of the House Paul Ryan and Rep. Mike Coffman to Senator Rob Portman.”

House Speaker Paul Ryan continues to hold the untenable position of acknowledging the unacceptable nature of Trump’s racism and nativism, while reiterating his plan to support Trump for the presidency.  Colorado Rep. Mike Coffman announced new television ads emphasizing his distance from Trump last week, while simultaneously refusing to rule out a Trump endorsement.  In contrast to Ohio’s Republican Gov. John Kasich, Ohio Senator Rob Portman continues to stand by his decision to support Trump for president despite acknowledging the unacceptable nature of Trump’s continued attacks on the Khan family.