Trump refuses to decline former KKK leader endorsement

Posted at 10:41 AM, Feb 28, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-28 10:41:59-05

WASHINGTON (AP) — Donald Trump is refusing to decline his endorsement by David Duke, saying he doesn’t know anything about the former Ku Klux Klan leader.

Trump was asked on CNN’s “State of the Union” whether he would declare that he didn’t want Duke’s support, or that of other white supremacists in the presidential election.

Trump says of Duke, “I just don’t know anything about him.”

Trump likewise says he wouldn’t condemn a group that he knows “nothing about.” He adds that if he were sent a list of groups he would research them and “certainly” would disavow any if he thought there was “something wrong.”

Meanwhile, Marco Rubio insists Trump won’t be the Republican presidential nominee.

But the Florida senator — publicly confident but still trailing the 2016 front-runner — also feels compelled to spell out a doomsday scenario for his party if Trump rolls onto victory.

Rubio tells CBS’ “Face the Nation” that if Trump wins the nomination, “it will split us and splinter us in a way that we may never be able to recover and the Democrats will be joyful about it.”

But Rubio suggests that doesn’t matter anyway because Trump won’t win the GOP nomination. He says, “It’s not going to happen.”

In the meantime, Rubio has another endorsement form a member of the Republican establishment. Sen. Lamar Alexander says Rubio can “inspire us, win the election and lead our country.” The Tennessee Republican says Rubio is tough on Islamic militants, an efficient administrator and an advocate for veterans.

Alexander is a former governor and secretary of education under President George H.W. Bush.