The Latest: Pence slams white supremacists, fringe groups
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President Donald Trump (all times local):
Vice President Mike Pence is responding to the violence during a march by white supremacists in Charlottesville, Virginia, saying “these dangerous fringe groups” have no place in American public life.
Pence was asked about the violent clashes this weekend in the Virginia college town as he spoke Sunday during a news conference in Cartagena, Colombia.
Both Republicans and Democrats have criticized President Donald Trump’s initial remarks about the violence in Charlottesville. Trump did not single out any group but blamed “many sides” for the violence.
On Sunday, Pence said, “We have no tolerance for hate and violence, white supremacists or neo-Nazis or the KKK.”
Following his remarks about such fringe groups, Pence added, “We condemn them in the strongest possible terms.”
The White House has been scrambling to elaborate on President Donald Trump’s response to deadly, race-fueled clashes in Charlottesville, Virginia.
The president came under withering bipartisan scolding for not clearly condemning white supremacists and other hate groups on Saturday.
The White House issued a statement Sunday saying that “of course” Trump was speaking about white supremacists, neo-Nazis and all extremist groups in his initial remarks.
Trump remained out of sight and silent, save for a few retweets. One was about two Virginia state policemen killed in a helicopter crash while monitoring the Charlottesville protests, another about a Justice Department probe into the violence.
The White House is saying that President Donald Trump “very strongly” condemns individual hate groups such as “white supremacists, KKK and neo-Nazis.”
A spokeswoman says Trump denounces “all forms of violence, bigotry and hatred.”
The statement comes in response to criticism leveled at Trump for his remarks in the hours after violent clashes in Virginia on Saturday.
Trump didn’t single out any group, but blamed “many sides” for the violence.
Some Republicans and Democrats are critical of Trump for not specifically singling out the hate groups that sparked the violent protests that rocked Charlottesville.
The president hasn’t addressed the matter on Sunday.
A White House spokeswoman declined to make the new statement on the record.
A senior White House aide is defending President Donald Trump’s remarks after a violent clash with white supremacists in Virginia left one person dead.
Homeland security adviser Tom Bossert tells CNN’s “State of the Union” that the media was trying to “press on the words he didn’t say.”
Some fellow Republicans have criticized Trump for not singling out the hate groups behind the violence in Charlottesville on Saturday.
Bossert is rejecting the claim that Trump had engaged in “a moral equivalency.”
Trump said there was hate and bigotry “on many sides.”
Bossert himself is specifically condemned the racist groups.
President Donald Trump is drawing criticism from Republicans and Democrats for not explicitly denouncing white supremacists in the aftermath of violent clashes in Virginia.
Some lawmakers say he needs to take a public stand against groups that espouse racism and hate.
On Saturday, Trump addressed the nation soon after a car plowed into a group of anti-racist counter-protesters in Charlottesville — where neo-Nazis and white nationalists had assembled for a march.
The president did not single out any group but blamed “many sides” for the violence.