One Of Trump's California Delegates Is The Leader Of A White Nationalist Party
Of the 169 delegates pledged to Donald Trump in next month's California primary, one of them is a corporate lawyer from Los Angeles who is also the leader of a fringe white nationalist party.On Monday night, the office of Secretary of State Alex Padilla posted the list of Republican delegates chosen and submitted by Trump's campaign. One of them, as reported by Mother Jones, is William Johnson, a Los Angeles lawyer who also happens to be the leader of the white nationalist American Freedom Party.
"I just hope to show how I can be mainstream and have these views," Johnson told Mother Jones. "I can be a white nationalist and be a strong supporter of Donald Trump and be a good example to everybody." He also said that when applying to be a delegate, he did not use the phrase "white nationalist" but did disclose his background and activism.
According to their website, the American Freedom Party's platform calls for white Americans to "push back" and says the party "shares the customs and heritage of the European American people." The Southern Poverty Law Center considers the AFP to be a hate group and says it was "initially established by racist Southern California skinheads [and] aims to deport immigrants and return the United States to white rule." The SPLC is a little less generous to Johnson, calling him "an uninspiring but determined white supremacist."
According to a statement from Tim Clark, Trump's California campaign director, Johnson had "previously been rejected and removed from the campaign's list [of delegates] in February 2016," and the final list did not include him. A source told the L.A. Times that the statement was inaccurate since the campaign had not selected their delegates until March. Despite Clark's comments, Johnson remains listed as a delegate on official documents.
Because Trump just makes it way too easy, Democrats were quick to fire another salvo at Trump. In a statement, Democratic National Committee national press secretary Mark Paustenbach said:
Donald Trump is the candidate that will Make America Hate Again. Trump's racist, xenophobic candidacy continues to fuel a resurgence of white nationalism in the United States, and to elevate a man like this shows that Trump has neither the temperament nor judgment to serve as president.