Black GOP senator condemns Trump for failing to denounce KKK

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Tim ScottTim ScottGOP senators avoid Trump questions on rigged election More Senate Republicans pressure Treasury over debt-equity rules Trump's implosion might be blessing in disguise for GOP MORE, the only black Republican in the Senate, waded into the controversy over Donald TrumpDonald TrumpRNC chairman defends Trump after refusal to say he'd accept election results Eric Trump: My father will accept election results if they are 'fair' Polls: Clinton, Trump separated by 3 points in Florida, Texas MORE, David Duke and the Ku Klux Klan on Sunday.

In a statement released by Florida Sen. Marco RubioMarco Rubio56 memorable moments from a wild presidential race New York Times endorses Rubio's rival Rubio: GOP Congress could go in different direction than Trump MORE’s presidential campaign, the South Carolina senator said: "Any candidate who cannot immediately condemn a hate group like the KKK does not represent the Republican Party, and will not unite it.”

That echoed statements from Rubio on the trail and in a tweet Sunday afternoon — part of a flood his campaign released attacking Trump for his failure to immediately dismiss an endorsement from Duke, a white nationalist. 

Trump disavowed Duke, a former Ku Klux Klan grand wizard, in a tweet Sunday — but not before stumbling over the issue on CNN’s “State of the Union” earlier in the day. On CNN, Trump said he didn't know anything about Duke or his connections.

"I have to look at the group. I don't know what group you're talking about," he said. "You wouldn't want me to condemn a group that I know nothing about."

Sen. Cory GardnerCory GardnerGOP senators avoid Trump questions on rigged election Administration vows 'proportional' response to Russian hack Trump denies Russia behind attack, despite fed investigation saying otherwise MORE (R-Colo.), in another statement released from the Rubio campaign, said: "The Republican Party is the party of Lincoln, the party that ended slavery. Donald Trump's embrace of the KKK is the clearest demonstration yet that he is not fit to be President.” 

Former Sen. Norm Coleman (R-Minn.), released a strongly worded statement through Rubio’s campaign, which said in part: “As someone of the Jewish faith, which has been a target of KKK hate and violence, I am sickened by Donald Trump's failure to condemn the KKK and disavow their support of his campaign.

“I recognize that many Republicans stood with Trump even after he insulted a war hero, mocked the disabled, degraded women and defamed a former Republican President. But Trump's failure to separate himself from David Duke and the KKK crosses the line of any standard of decency.”

On the Democratic side, front-runner Hillary Clinton showed a rare moment of unity with rival Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), as the two landed on the same side of this issue, with Clinton retweeting a message from Sanders’s account.