President Trump on Thursday doubled down on his widely panned comments blaming “both sides” for the deadly violence at a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, last month.
”When you look at really what’s happened since Charlottesville, a lot of people are saying and people have actually written, ‘Gee, Trump may have a point,’ ” the president told reporters on Air Force One as he returned to Washington, D.C., after visiting with Hurricane Irma victims in Florida. “I said there’s some very bad people on the other side also.”
The president’s remarks came in response to questions about his White House meeting on Wednesday with Republican South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, who was among the many politicians on both sides of the aisle to lambaste Trump’s response to the violent clashes between white nationalists and counter-protesters at the white supremacist rally in Charlottesville.
”We had a great talk yesterday, I think especially in light of the advent of Antifa,” the president said of his talk with Scott, referencing the anti-racist groups that track the activities of local neo-Nazis and battled with white supremacists in Charlottesville. “If you look at what’s going on there, you have some pretty bad dudes on the other side also and essentially that’s what I said.”
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After the violence in Charlottesville resulted in the death of one counter-protester, 32-year-old Heather Heyer, Trump kicked up a firestorm when he insisted multiple times that “there’s blame on both sides.”
“You look at both sides – I think there’s blame on both sides, and I have no doubt about it, and you don’t have any doubt about it either,” he said last month.