Magazine article The Nation

Every Man a Duke

Magazine article The Nation

Every Man a Duke

Article excerpt

Sixty-nine percent of white fundamentalist or born-again Christians who voted in Louisiana's election pulled the lever for Nazi-turned-Nazi/Christian David Duke, according to exit polls. Fifty-six percent of Republican and 55 percent of all white voters did the same. During my few days in New Orleans it was clear that many more wanted to do so--probably a majority--but felt inhibited by suggestions that a Louisiana Uber Alles would suffer retaliation from outside businesses less forgiving of Duke's "youthful indiscretions." The last-minute ad blitz waged by the rascally but engaging Edwin Edwards hammered away at this point but also helped legitimize Duke's message. A half-hour Edwards TV commercial--" The Decision of Our Lives"--featured a concerned-looking Baton Rouge oil worker who explained his pending vote for Edwards this way: "David Duke has some good ideas, but if you have good ideas but you don't have the support you can't get anything done." Now, Governor,

what good ideas migth those be?

Outside Duke's combination home, campaign office and onetime bookstore--a white clapboard house in a suburban tract built on drained swampland--a handful of Duke supporters on Election Day had no doubts as to the answer. Catherine Giorlando, her brother-in-law Peter and Reynald Redler, all of whom proudly work for the construction company that built Duke's residence, are angry, economically squeezed young adults, ready-made for a populist appeal. …

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