House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) on Tuesday said “there can be no moral ambiguity” about the repugnance of white supremacy in what appeared to be an ambiguous response to President Donald Trump’s off-the-rails press conference.
“We must be clear. White supremacy is repulsive. This bigotry is counter to all this country stands for,” Ryan tweeted. “There can be no moral ambiguity.”
We must be clear. White supremacy is repulsive. This bigotry is counter to all this country stands for. There can be no moral ambiguity.
— Paul Ryan (@SpeakerRyan) August 15, 2017
Ryan did not specify what prompted the statement, but his tweet came hours after Trump switched course and went back to blaming “both sides” for the violence that erupted at a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia over the weekend.
“Not all of those people were neo-Nazis, believe me. Not all of those people were white supremacists, by any stretch,” Trump said in a press conference at Trump Tower in New York. “You had a lot of bad people in the other group, too.”
His reversal was the second in two days. Trump on Monday read a curt statement condemning white supremacists and neo-Nazis after waiting two days to specifically denounce those hate groups (the President initially blamed “many sides” for the violence).
Trump backtracked on Tuesday, saying, “I think there’s blame on both sides.”