Mike Pence Denounces David Duke but Won't Call Him 'Deplorable'

"I’m not in the name-calling business," Pence said.

September 12, 2016, 7:10 PM

— -- Republican vice presidential candidate Mike Pence is facing heat for declining to use the term “deplorable” to describe former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke.

“I’m not in the name-calling business, Wolf. You know me better than that,” Pence told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer today.

Pence's comments came as he was slamming Hillary Clinton for saying last week that half of Trump’s supporters are “in the basket of deplorables.” When Blitzer pointed out that Duke was a Trump supporter and could fit that category, Pence responded he and Trump had repeatedly disavowed Duke.

“I’m not really sure why the media keeps dropping David Duke’s name. Donald Trump has denounced David Duke repeatedly. We don’t want his support and we don’t want the support of the people who think like him,” he said.

The Clinton camp immediately hit back.

Asked about Duke again on Fox News just moments later, Pence doubled down.

"I'm not a name-caller, I don't play that game, but we have denounced him repeatedly," he said.

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