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Trump to Meet With Sessions, FBI on Charlottesville Rally

Image: Trump to Meet With Sessions, FBI on Charlottesville Rally
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Monday, 14 August 2017 09:55 AM

President Donald Trump will meet with Attorney General Jeff Sessions and FBI Director Christopher Wray in Washington on Monday to discuss the deadly white-supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, the White House said after a mounting public outcry about Trump’s response to the extremists.

“There is no bigger case right now that we are working on. Every resource will be dedicated to it,” Sessions said on CBS. “I will be asking that we do that kind of thing today.”

Trump on Saturday denounced the “egregious display of hatred, bigotry, violence -- on many sides” in Charlottesville. The White House said “of course” he included white supremacists, neo-Nazis “and all extremist groups” in that statement.

Sessions defended Trump and suggested the president may say more publicly about the issue Monday.

Domestic Terrorism

“He explicitly condemned the kind of ideology behind these movements of Nazism, white supremacy, the KKK. That is his unequivocal position,” Sessions said on ABC. “I think you’ll hear that again today.”

He also sought to reassure listeners about the federal government’s civil-rights probe of a car attack in Charlottesville that killed one counter-protester and injured 19 others. Two Virginia State Police pilots assisting with law enforcement during the rally also died Saturday when their helicopter crashed.

“It does meet the definition of domestic terrorism in our statute,” Sessions said of the car attack. “You can be sure we will charge and advance the investigation for the most serious charges that can be brought.”

Missed Opportunity

Both Democrats and Republicans said over the weekend that Trump missed a chance to unite the country with his remarks on Saturday, in which he condemned “hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides” but failed to specifically call out the white-nationalist groups behind the weekend’s violence.

“He missed an opportunity to be very explicit here,” Senator Lindsey Graham, a South Carolina Republican, told Fox News on Sunday. “These groups seem to believe they have a friend in Donald Trump in the White House.”

Vice President Mike Pence offered a more forceful condemnation of white supremacists on Sunday than Trump had. “We have no tolerance for hate and violence from white supremacists, neo Nazis or the KKK,” Pence said during a news conference in Colombia, where he stopped on a tour of Latin America.

Corporate, Foreign Backlash

The violence also sparked condemnation internationally.

“These were repulsive scenes” of racism, anti-Semitism and hate, said a spokesman for German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

She and the entire German government express solidarity “with those who take a peaceful stand against such aggressive right-wing extremist stances,” said the spokesman, Steffen Seibert, at a briefing in Berlin.

Merck & Co.’s CEO resigned from Trump’s council of manufacturing executives Monday, saying “America’s leaders must honor our fundamental values” by rejecting expressions of hatred, bigotry and group supremacy.

Trump responded less than an hour later on Twitter, suggesting the CEO, Ken Frazier, now focus on lowering “ripoff drug prices.”

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President Donald Trump will meet with Attorney General Jeff Sessions and FBI Director Christopher Wray in Washington on Monday to discuss the deadly white-supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, the White House said after a mounting public outcry about Trump's...
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Monday, 14 August 2017 09:55 AM
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