White nationalist Richard Spencer said this week that he felt he “clearly” had an influence on White House adviser Stephen Miller and that they were “friends” while they attended Duke University, rebutting Miller’s prior remarks that Spencer’s “claims are 100 percent false.”
On yesterday’s episode of “The Richard Spencer Show,” hosted on a white nationalist YouTube channel called “Heel Turn,” Spencer’s Iowa-based co-host Seth Wallace read a question sent to them via YouTube’s “Super Chat” system, a financial system that viewers can use to donate money to live-streamed content producers. Wallace read a question in which a viewer asked about Spencer’s past relationship with Miller and wondering why other white nationalist podcasters call him “our guy” when Miller is Jewish.
“Stephen Miller and I were friends at Duke when I was a graduate student there in the history department and he was an undergraduate,” Spencer said. “I think I’m four years older than him, or maybe five, so we’re roughly contemporaries although I was in a different position than he was. I actually met him at the Duke Conservative Union and I generally like Stephen. We’re very different, you could say personally speaking, but we did get along.”
“We actually collaborated. We worked on an immigration debate, which we brought Peter Brimelow to campus, which in the context of 2007—and you know, this is totally pre-alt-right and so on—doing such a thing is pretty edgy,” Spencer added.
Spencer recalled telling a journalist before that he did believe he influenced Miller, but said that he believes Miller would have “gotten to where he is today with or without me” and “would have ended up exactly where he is today.”
“Clearly I was influencing him. I was a little bit older in this organization. I was the one pushing for the immigration debate, obviously. I cared about these issues,” Spencer said. “So clearly I influenced him, but am I decisive in his life or something? No, I don’t think so.”
“I was who I was in 2007,” Spencer said. “I’ve obviously changed a little bit and I’m certainly more open in public, but no, I am the same person. So that claim that I was like a Ron Paul libertarian or something is absurd and no one should believe it.”
Spencer closed his remarks on the question by saying that Miller understands that “immigration breeds national division” but said he doesn’t believe Miller sees eye-to-eye with him on every issue or would qualify as a white nationalist in his eyes.
Right Wing Watch emailed the White House press office for clarification and comment but did not receive a response.