2020 Democrat Candidates Condemn Trump After He Denounces White Supremacy

President Donald Trump speaks about the mass shootings in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio, in the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House, Monday, Aug. 5, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Democrat presidential candidates reacted to President Trump’s Monday morning remarks about the deadly shootings that took place over the weekend, condemning him despite the fact that he forcefully denounced white supremacy.

Trump addressed the nation Monday morning and condemned the “monstrous evil, the cruelty, the hatred, the malice, the bloodshed, and the terror” that occurred over the weekend after a gunman in El Paso, Texas, murdered 22 and a shooter in Dayton, Ohio, murdered 9. Between both tragedies, several dozen were injured.

Trump unequivocally condemned white supremacy and “racist hate” and signaled support for “red flag” laws, which would allow relatives to petition court-ordered seizures of the family member in question, as Breitbart News reported.

“In one voice our nation must condemn racism, bigotry and white supremacy,” Trump said, adding, “These sinister ideologies must be defeated. Hate has no place in America”:

New Jersey senator and Democrat presidential candidate Cory Booker (D-NJ) had a different interpretation of Trump’s remarks, telling his four million Twitter followers that the president categorized white supremacy as a “mental illness.”

“The president is weak. And wrong,” Booker wrote. “White supremacy is not a mental illness, and guns are a tool that white supremacists use to fulfill their hate”:

Trump did not call white supremacy a “mental illness” during his remarks. He spoke of the importance of mental health-based reforms moving forward, but he specifically condemned white supremacy, bigotry, and racism, calling them “sinister ideologies” – not mental illnesses.

Booker’s campaign manager took it a step further and posted an image of Booker’s initial response to Trump’s remarks.

“Listening to the president. Such a bullshit soup of ineffective words. This is so weak. We should quickly condemn his lack of a real plan,” Addisu Demissie posted with the words “I will let the boss speak for himself”:

Booker’s fellow 2020 candidates followed suit, condemning Trump after he denounced white supremacy and attacking him for urging lawmakers to address mental health issues.

“‘Mental illness & hate pulls trigger, not the gun’ is President’s dodge to avoid truth,” Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) tweeted in part:

Joe Biden (D) echoed Klobuchar’s sentiment, tweeting, “Mr. President, immigration isn’t the problem. White nationalism is the problem. America’s inaction on gun safety legislation is the problem”:

Julián Castro (D) took it a step further, accusing Trump of continuing to be a “national spokesperson” for racists and white nationalists:

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