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Buchanan S.C. Leader Out; Ties With Duke

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AllPolitics, Feb. 23) -- Pat Buchanan's South Carolina campaign has been forced to remove a member of its steering committee because of the man's ties to former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke.

William Carter, who was state chairman for Duke's 1992 presidential campaign, was dumped from the Buchanan steering committee after the campaign got a question about his ties to Duke.

Carter told Associated Press he was told earlier this week by Dan Griffith, state director of the Buchanan campaign, that he was out.

"It's not printable in a family newspaper what I told them," Carter said. "I'm upset about it, particularly when I didn't ask to be on the steering committee. I feel like I have been publicly embarrassed." Griffith did not return a phone call seeking comment.

South Carolina's primary on March 2, the first in the south this year, will be an important test. Thirty-seven delegates are at stake.

Carter is chair of the South Carolina Council of Conservative Citizens, which he described as "slightly to the right of Buchanan." The group organizes rallies in support of flying the Confederate flag atop the Statehouse.

Buchanan has disavowed any ties with Duke and said he cannot control who supports his campaign for the GOP presidential nomination.

[David Duke]

Earlier this year, Duke tried to welcome Buchanan after a campaign rally in Metairie, La., but Buchanan brushed past him. "He supports me. I don't support him," Buchanan said afterward.

Carter is the third person to leave the campaign because of alleged extremist views. A national co-chair, Larry Pratt, stepped aside because of his alleged ties to militia and white supremacist views. In Florida, a county chair of Buchanan's campaign was relieved of duty after it was revealed she was an official of the National Association for the Advancement of White People.

Also today, The New York Times reported that three of Buchanan's 13 Louisiana delegates have ties to Duke.

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