Report: WH Sent Memo To GOP Saying Trump Was ‘Correct’ On Charlottesville

President Donald Trump pauses as he speaks to members of the media regarding the on going situation in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, Aug. 12, 2017 at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminister, N.J. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP

The White House is asking Republican members of Congress to follow the President’s lead as he blames “both sides” for the violence that broke out in Charlottesville, Va. during a white supremacist rally over the weekend, according to a memo obtained by The Atlantic.

Just hours after President Donald Trumps gave a provocative press conference — claiming that both the “alt-left” and the “alt-right” are to blame for the deadly violence that broke out in Charlottesville when a self-proclaimed white supremacists allegedly drove his car into a crowd of counter protestors  — the White House gave Republicans guidance on how to discuss Charlottesville.

This kind of memo is sent to Republicans on a daily basis, The Atlantic reported.

The memo asked Republicans to use similar rhetoric as the President that “both sides of the violence in Charlottesville acted inappropriately, and bear some responsibility.”

“The President was entirely correct. … Despite the criticism, the President reaffirmed some of our most important founding principles: We are equal in the eyes of our creator, equal under the law, and equal under our Constitution,” the memo said.

The White House claimed Trump has been a voice “for unity and calm” and has called for the “end of violence on all sides so that no more innocent lives would be lost.”

The talking points also suggested that Trump, “with no ambiguity,” condemned the hate groups by name and blamed the media for reacting with “hysteria” to the President’s talking points that counter-protestors “showed up with clubs spoiling for a fight.”

It took the President two full days to condemn the white nationalists and neo-Nazis who gathered for the rally that turned violent Saturday.

“We should not overlook the facts just because the media finds them inconvenient: From cop killing and violence at political rallies, to shooting at Congressmen at a practice baseball game, extremists on the left have engaged in terrible acts of violence,” it said.

The memo also outlined the “swift action” Trump is taking to hold the “hate groups” accountable, including the Department of Justice’s opening of a civil rights investigation into the alleged car attack.

“Leaders and the media in our country should join the President in trying to unite and heal our country rather than incite more division,” it said.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Nicole Lafond is a news writer for TPM based in New York City. She is also currently earning a master's degree in journalism from Columbia University and previously worked as an education reporter at The News-Gazette in Champaign, Ill. Follow her on Twitter @Nicole_Lafond.
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