12:36 pm Jun. 21, 2012
City Councilman Charles Barron got an endorsement today for his bid for Congress that he probably wasn't looking for, in the form of a long video message from former Louisiana state representative and Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke.
Duke's argument, such as it is, seems to be that he'd rather have the anti-Zionist candidate, even if he's a black nationalist.
Barron, who is running against Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries for a Brooklyn-Queens seat being vacated by longtime incumbent Democrat Ed Towns, has tried to downplay his controversial foreign policy statements in recent weeks.
Today, he called Duke's endorsement "foolish" and irrelevant.
"We're staying focused, and we demand respect for our campaign," he told the Daily News. "I don't think that's a campaign issue. I don't think it's intelligent."
I reached out to a spokesperson for Jeffries, who called on Barron to denounce the remarks.
"Hate and extreme rhetoric have no place in our society," said Lupe Todd, a spokesperson for the campaign. "We denounce David Duke's remarks in its entirety and urge the other candidate in this race to do the same."
If Duke really wanted to help Barron, he might consider a donation. Barron reported just $11,000 in cash on hand.