BATON ROUGE, LA (AP/WCMH) – Former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke has announced that he plans to run for U.S. Senate in Louisiana.
Duke made the announcement Friday through a YouTube video posted to his website and other social media outlets.
After the great outpouring of overwhelming support, I am proud to announce my candidacy for the United States Senate. I believe in equal rights for all and respect for all Americans. However, what makes me different is that I also demand respect for the rights and heritage of European-Americans.
A registered Republican, he would be seeking an open seat vacated by Republican David Vitter.
Duke’s announcement comes as Louisiana is grappling with deep racial tensions after the shooting death of a black man by white police officers and the killing of three law enforcement officers by a black man.
A white supremacist, Duke served one term as a state representative representing suburban New Orleans more than two decades ago. He ran unsuccessfully for governor in 1991 against Democrat Edwin Edwards.
Duke is a convicted felon, pleading guilty in 2002 to bilking his supporters and cheating on his taxes. He spent a year in federal prison.