Oh boy. David Duke will be speaking to supporters this weekend about possibly “entering the Republican primaries for President of the United States,” for the 2012 elections. The Bonner County Daily Bee has some more detail.
To put this into perspective, it should be noted that since 1988, Duke has either run or tried to run for elected office at least six times.
The most analogous cases took place in 1988 and 1992. In 1988 Duke tried to get the Democratic nomination for president but didn’t come close, and ended up running against George H.W. Bush and Michael Dukakis on the Populist Party ticket. (The Populist Party was created in 1984 by Willis Carto, a giant among American antisemites since the 1950s.) At the time, the Reading Eagle had a nice article describing some of Duke’s attacks on Jews and “Zionists;” the paper also reports that Duke wanted to overturn school desegregation laws, impose “mandatory birth control for welfare recipients,” and close the border to all immigrants.
Duke tried to get the Republican nomination for president back in 1992, but with little success. In Georgia, for example, Duke was unanimously rejected by Republican officials from running in the party’s primary. For good measure, a Republican spokesman at the time called him a “Nazi,” which technically may be a bit too strong. The ADL describes Duke as an anti-Semite and white supremacist, but appears to reserve the neo-Nazi label for those who self-identify as supporters of der Fuhrer, which Duke does not.