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House Majority Whip Scalise acknowledges speaking at white nationalist meeting

The congressman said he didn't know the group supports white supremacy.

By
Danielle Haynes
House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., speaks at a House Republican leadership press conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. on Nov. 18. Scalise acknowledges speaking at a white supremacy convention in 2002, but he didn't realize it at the time. File Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI
House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., speaks at a House Republican leadership press conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. on Nov. 18. Scalise acknowledges speaking at a white supremacy convention in 2002, but he didn't realize it at the time. File Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI | License Photo

WASHINGTON, Dec. 29 (UPI) -- House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., admitted Monday he was a guest speaker at a white supremacist convention in 2002, though he didn't realize it at the time.

Scalise spoke at a convention for the European-American Unity and Rights Organization (EURO) in Metairie, La., Louisana politics blogger Lamar White Jr. reported Monday.

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The organization was founded in 2001 by white supremacist David Duke, former grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan.

Scalise, 48, acknowledged he spoke at the event when he was a state representative, but he didn't realize that the group supports white supremacy.

"Throughout his career in public service, Mr. Scalise has spoken to hundreds of different groups with a broad range of viewpoints," Scalise spokeswoman Moira Bagley told the Washington Post. "In every case, he was building support for his policies, not the other way around. In 2002, he made himself available to anyone who wanted to hear his proposal to eliminate slush funds that wasted millions of taxpayer dollars, as well as his opposition to a proposed tax increase on middle-class families.

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"He has never been affiliated with the abhorrent group in question. The hate-fueled ignorance and intolerance that group projects is in stark contradiction to what Mr. Scalise believes and practices as a father, a husband, and a devoted Catholic," Bagley said.

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