Liberals and progressives have been quick to condemn the violence in Charlottesville on Republicans, conservatives, the alt-right, the KKK, neo-Nazis, and white supremacists. However, the richest of condemnations came from Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) when he personally blamed President Donald Trump.
According to the Burlington Free Press, Sanders was asked about who shared responsibility for the violence that left one woman dead and dozens others injured when a car driven by a white nationalist, James Alex Fields, Jr., plowed into a crowd of counter-protesters on Saturday.
“How much, if any responsibility do you think that the Trump administration has for conjuring that behavior?” one reporter asked.
Sanders responded, “Look, I think it is — when you have a president who doesn’t have the guts to say what the vast majority of the people understand to be true, that white supremacy and neo-Nazism have got to be condemned, he can’t even do that! The message he is sending out to racists and neo-Nazis all over the country is, ‘It’s OK.’ In fact, you heard some language to that. ‘The president hasn’t condemned us. Why don’t we do more rallies? Why don’t we spread the word of white supremacy and racism and neo-Nazism?’ So do I think the president bears some responsibility for that? Absolutely, yes.”
Back in June, James T. Hodgkinson, a Bernie Sanders campaign volunteer and supporter, opened fire on a Republican congressional baseball practice that wounded House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and three others. While Sanders was quick to condemn Hodgkinson’s actions, politicians and pundits from both sides of the aisle made sure that he wasn’t blamed for the attack.
It’s important to note here that all of this flack that Trump is receiving could have been avoided if he denounced the white supremacists, KKK, and neo-Nazis the first time around. However, Sanders is reaffirming liberal talking points that conflate white supremacy with Trump and by extension the Republican party, despite the fact that both Trump and virtually every Republican have condemned those groups.
Watch the full clip below: