August 16, 2017
U.S. Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey called President Donald Trump an "alt-right-apologist-in-chief" after he reiterated during a Tuesday press conference that "there is blame on both sides" for the weekend's white supremacy rallies that turned deadly in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Booker, who is rumored to be a 2020 Democratic candidate for president, took to Twitter Tuesday night and said that he is "outraged and disgusted."
Once again Trump leaves me outraged & disgusted. He betrays the office & the people he has sworn to serve. #SickAndTiredOfBeingSickAndTired— Cory Booker (@CoryBooker) August 16, 2017
Disgracefully, today Trump was not the Commander-in-Chief but the Alt-Right-Apologist-in-chief.— Cory Booker (@CoryBooker) August 16, 2017
Trump showed himself to be more of an ally of the Alt-right/white supremacists than our country and our most cherished common values.— Cory Booker (@CoryBooker) August 16, 2017
There is no question who he is. The critical moral question is: who are we? We can not surrender America to Trump. We must fight.— Cory Booker (@CoryBooker) August 16, 2017
Trump spoke for the third time about the events on Tuesday, defending his initial remarks that both protesters and counterprotesters of a "Unite the Right" rally were at fault for the violence.
The rally, initially organized to protest the removal of a statue of Confederate leader Robert E. Lee, drew white supremacists from across the country. By the end of the weekend, dozens were injured and three were dead, including 32-year-old Heather Heyer, a counterprotester who died after a car drove into a crowd of activists protesting "Unite the Right."
The president came under fire for attributing the blame to both sides but later called members of the Ku Klux Klan, neo-Nazis and white supremacists "criminals and thugs."
But Trump doubled down on Tuesday.
"What about the alt-left that came charging at, as you say, the alt-right, do they have any semblance of guilt ... What about the fact they came charging with clubs in hands, swinging clubs?" Trump said. "Do they have any problem? I think they do."
The comments drew praise from white supremacists, including from David Duke, former KKK grand wizard.
Booker joined many other politicians, both Democratic and Republican, who spoke out on the latest from Trump. U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts called the comments "sick" while Speaker of the House Paul Ryan called white supremacy "repulsive."