Florida Senator Marco Rubio added his voice to the growing chorus of Republicans speaking out against what they felt was a weak statement from President Trump on the events today in Charlottesville, Virginia.
After clashes between white nationalists and counter-protesters, the “Unite the Right” rally was halted and police in riot gear instructed the white nationalists to leave the park, where they were rallying against the removal of a statue honoring Confederate General Robert E. Lee.
Later, a man driving a gray Dodge Challenger rammed a crowd of counter-protesters, killing at least one.
“We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides, on many sides,” Trump said at a press conference from his golf club in New Jersey.
Senator Rubio later released this statement:
— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) August 12, 2017
Rubio joins Senators Cory Gardner, Orrin Hatch, Chuck Grassley, Jeff Flake, and Tim Scott in chiding the president for refusing to specifically call out the white supremacists.
Mr. President – we must call evil by its name. These were white supremacists and this was domestic terrorism. https://t.co/PaPNiPPAoW
— Cory Gardner (@SenCoryGardner) August 12, 2017
We should call evil by its name. My brother didn't give his life fighting Hitler for Nazi ideas to go unchallenged here at home. -OGH
— Senator Hatch Office (@senorrinhatch) August 12, 2017
What " WhiteNatjonalist" are doing in Charlottesville is homegrown terrorism that can't be tolerated anymore that what Any extremist does
— ChuckGrassley (@ChuckGrassley) August 12, 2017
— Jeff Flake (@JeffFlake) August 12, 2017
— Tim Scott (@SenatorTimScott) August 12, 2017
There concerns may have some merit. After Trump’s press conference, one commenter at the white nationalist website, the Daily Stormer, posted these thoughts:
Feedback from Nazi group on trump's comments pic.twitter.com/9de2BlCHZg
— ChrisStanton (@ChrisStanton) August 12, 2017
Trump wasn’t wrong that there was hatred and violence on both sides. The counter-protesters were NOT the good guys, lest anybody get the notion that they were there to be noble, peaceful resistance against the ugliness of white nationalism on display.
Nope. Sheer ugliness was in abundance across the board.
That being said, when you’ve got people on American soil giving the Nazi salute, or the hate is so ramped up that one would ram his car into a group of people walking away, killing one, then you call that out by name, so that there’s no mistaking where you stand.
Say it, Mr. President: WHITE. SUPREMACISTS.