Virginia KKK Leader Endorses Trump

| by Lauren Briggs
Ku Klux Klan leaders in robes with Confederate flagKu Klux Klan leaders in robes with Confederate flag

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has snagged yet another Ku Klux Klan endorsement, this time from the Imperial Wizard of a Virginia KKK branch.

"I think Donald Trump would be best for the job," the Imperial Wizard of the Rebel Brigade Knights of the Ku Klux Klan told WWBT when asked about the election. "The reason a lot of Klan members like Donald Trump is because a lot of what he believes in, we believe in. We want our country to be safe."

The Wizard cited in particular Trump's call to temporarily ban all Muslims from entering the United States.

"If Donald Trump dropped out tomorrow I would support Kasich before I would Ted Cruz because he is not an American citizen," the controversial group's leader added. "Even if I agree with some of the things that Ted Cruz says, I would not support him because he was born in Canada. He is not an American citizen."

While the KKK's violent past is well known, the Imperial Wizard insisted that they have changed and are no longer a hate group, despite being officially designated as one by the Southern Poverty Law Center:

We are not white supremacists. We are white separatists. We choose to stay within our own race. We are not the big bad hate group that everybody thinks we are. A lot of people, as soon as they hear the words Ku Klux Klan, their mind automatically goes back to the 50s and 60s. It was a pretty bad time, but that was the 1950s and 60s. We are living in a different century now.

While the Imperial Wizard maintains that the modern KKK is "better today" and is not the "organization of the 50s and 60s," the KKK has not yet disavowed themselves of being domestic terrorists, according to Marty Jewell, education chairman with the Richmond NAACP. Still, the Wizard said that they are strictly nonviolent.

"We are not here hollering kill, kill, kill," he said. "We don't want to harm no one."

Trump himself has not yet commented on the endorsement, although he has faced controversy in February for hesitating to disavow an endorsement from former KKK Grand Wizard turned conservative radio host David Duke, notes CNN. The real estate mogul eventually disavowed Duke and the KKK, saying that he did not do so initially because of a faulty earpiece.

Sources: WWBT, CNN / Photo credit: Martin/Flickr

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