In an interview this past Sunday, August 13th, CNN's Jake Tapper confronted White House homeland security adviser Tom Bossert over President Trump's refusal to explicitly condemn the white supremacists, neo-nazis, and members of the alt-right who met in Charlottesville to protest the removal of a statue of Robert E. Lee. The protest ultimately resulted in three deaths, including a counter-protestor who was killed when a car, driven by a white supremacist, intentionally crashed into a crowd of people.
This isn't about President Trump — this is about a level of violence and hatred that could not be tolerated in this country. I was with the president yesterday, and I'm proud of the fact that he stood up and calmly looked into the camera and condemned this violence and bigotry in all its forms. This racial intolerance and racial bigotry cannot be condoned.
Trump comments were good. He didn’t attack us. He just said the nation should come together. Nothing specific against us. He said that we need to study why people are so angry, and implied that there was hate … on both sides! So he implied the antifa are haters. There was virtually no counter-signaling of us at all. He said he loves us all. Also refused to answer a question about White Nationalists supporting him. No condemnation at all. When asked to condemn, he just walked out of the room. Really, really good. God bless him.
The words of the ignorant bear little with me and should bear less with you in the media. [The President] didn't dignify the names of these groups of people, but rather addressed the fundamental issue.
When you just condemn groups, as opposed to specifically white supremacists, Nazis, Klan members — it creates this vagueness," Tapper said. "And you, on this show today, have said that you condemn groups, and condemn actions and condemn bigotry. But I haven't heard you say 'I condemn white supremacists, I condemn nazis, I condemn the alt-right.' And I think a lot of people are upset, a lot of Republican officials, that they didn't hear that from President Trump. But I don't want to belabor the point.
I think you've belabored it so let me say I condemn white supremacists, and nazis, and groups that favor this type of exclusion. I can't be clearer.