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David Duke, the former Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan who recently announced he’s running for US Senate, has the support of 14% of black voters in his home state of Louisiana, according to a poll from the University of New Orleans’ Survey Research Center.
That number might seem low, but Duke is actually doing relatively well with the group compared to another controversial person seeking office this year – Donald Trump.
The Survey Research Center poll does come with a few caveats: it was landline-only, excluding the significant number of Louisianans who only have cell phones. It also did not ask voters directly compare Duke to Trump or any other candidate.
But Donald Trump is polling dismally among black voters. According to the most recent round of national polls, he’s hovering in the low single digits: 1% in a WSJ/NBC poll, 2% in a Marist poll, and 4% in a Fox News Poll.
An NBC News-Wall Street Journal-Marist poll in June famously found that 0% of voters in key swing states Pennsylvania and Ohio support him.
Even though Black voters have historically supported Democrats, Trump’s numbers are particularly bad. His campaign has been dogged by a number of scandals that likely played a role in turning black voters against him, including his failure to immediately disavow David Duke, his habit of retweeting material posted by alt-right users, and a reported 1991 quote in which he called black people lazy.
Even Mitt Romney, who was running against an incumbent black president, won 6% of the black vote in 2012.
Duke, however, has come out in strong support of Trump. He announced his candidacy for Senate the day after Trump formally accepted the Republican nomination, outlining his plan to be a voice for white European-Americans in Congress, a group he believes is underrepresented.
“As a United States senator, nobody will be more supportive of his legislative agenda, his Supreme Court agenda, than I will,” Duke said in an NPR interview. “I represent the ideas of preserving this country and the heritage of this country, and I think Trump represents that as well.”
The polls come as Trump is deliberately ramping up his efforts to win over black voters, particularly by targeting black churches.