A few national pundits are taking U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise to task after news spread Monday and Tuesday that he spoke at an event in 2002 led by a David Duke-led white nationalist group.

On Monday, Scalise's spokeswoman Moira Bagley Smith issued a statement denouncing the group’s white supremacist views.

"He has never been affiliated with the abhorrent group in question," the statement said. "The hate-fueled ignorance and intolerance that group projects is in stark contradiction to what Mr. Scalise believes and practices as a father, a husband and a devoted Catholic."

Says The Washington Post's Jennifer Rubin, a conservative columnist: Scalise's "actions then reflect appalling judgment, and his reaction to the controversy is not helping matters ... he may spare his party from an outpouring of feigned indignation and mock outrage by stepping down from a leadership post ... His appearance before that group was inexcusable."

Here's a sampling of perspective from other national outlets.

Slate: Louisiana’s Long History of Racism; why Rep. Steve Scalise spoke to a white nationalist hate group

Vox: To win in Louisiana, Steve Scalise compromised with a racist political culture

Bloomberg: David Duke Returns to Haunt the Republican House Whip