He just couldn’t leave it alone, could he?
President Trump today doubled down on his initial statement about the riots in Charlottesville, Virginia, blaming ONCE AGAIN protesters “on both sides.”
“You had a group on one side who was bad, and you had a group on the other side that was also very violent, and nobody wants to say that, but I’ll say it right now,” Trump said, referring to white supremacists, anti-fascists known as “antifa” and counterprotesters who converged in Charlottesville over the weekend. “You had a group on the other side that came charging in without a permit, and they were very, very violent.”
He went on to explain that the reason it took so long to condemn the neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and KKK followers was because he was waiting on “the facts” before he spoke.
“I wanted to make sure, unlike most politicians, that what I said was correct, not make a quick statement. The statement I made on Saturday, the first statement, was a fine statement, but you don’t make statements that direct unless you know the facts,” Trump argued. “It takes a little while to get the facts. You still don’t know the facts. It is a very, very important process to me. It is a very important statement. So I don’t want to go quickly and just make a statement for the sake of making a political statement. I want to know the facts.”
He also argued against taking down Confederate statues…
On taking down Confederate Statues, Trump says, “I wonder, is it George Washington next week and Thomas Jefferson the week after?” pic.twitter.com/lXrOJ3iunA
— David Mack (@davidmackau) August 15, 2017
My quick take? This is the war between Kelly and Bannon playing out. I think the initial comments on Saturday were written by Kelly after the WH went into crisis mode when Trump took his sweet time commenting on the situation. Trump read the statement, then went off script with his “both sides, both sides” comment. After that set the world on fire, Kelly made him walk it back. Then Bannon tore into him about alienating the base, which is why he said what he did today. And the dueling moral compasses of Kelly and Bannon is NOT going to end well for either one of them, I guarantee it.
Oh, and David Duke’s reaction (because I’m sure you were clamoring to know)? He just tweeted:
“Thank you President Trump for your honesty & courage to tell the truth about #Charlottesville and condemn the leftist terrorists in BLM/Antifa.”
(I’m not linking to his tweet because… well, you understand)
(Top screen grab via Fox video)