As the nation tries to grieve, recover and heal from the mass shooting atrocities in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, this weekend, Sen. Cory Booker took the opportunity to blame President Donald Trump for the murders.
The Democratic presidential contender, currently polling at less than 4%, did not focus his outrage on the people who pulled the trigger. Rather, Booker used his entire interview Sunday on NBC to blame Trump.
“We have a president of the United States who is particularly responsible,” the New Jersey senator said in an interview on “Meet the Press.”
Booker claimed Trump’s words are the cause of hatred and violence in America and that the recent violence “lies at his feet.” The president’s alleged hate “undermines the goodness and decency of Americans,” he said.
Then Booker told the host, Chuck Todd, that Trump “is responsible when he has taken no action whatsoever to even condemn white supremacy.”
There is a huge problem with that.
Trump has indeed condemned white supremacy, racism and bigotry on many occasions.
After the 2017 violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, Trump issued a lengthy statement that condemned racism and white supremacy.
“Racism is evil, and those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists and other hate groups that are repugnant to all that we hold dear as a nation,” the president said.
Additionally, Trump signed a resolution to “condemn violence in Charlottesville and oppose hatred, bigotry, and racism in all forms.”
“No matter the color of our skin or our ethnic heritage,” his resolution said, “we all live under the same laws, we all salute the same great flag, and we are all made by the same almighty God. We are a Nation founded on the truth that all of us are created equal.”
In a speech later in 2017, Trump again did what Booker claimed he had never done.
“Racism is evil. … No matter our color, creed, religion or political party, we are all Americans first. We love our country. We love our God. And we love our flag,” the president said during a rally in Phoenix.”
“We must love each other,” Trump said, “show affection for each other, and unite together in condemnation of hatred, bigotry and violence.”
And Monday morning — albeit after Booker’s interview — Trump again condemned white supremacy.
“In one voice, our nation must condemn racism, bigotry and white supremacy,” he said. “These sinister ideologies must be defeated. Hate has no place in America.”
Last year, on the anniversary of the Charlottesville violence, the president again condemned the evils of bigotry.
“The riots in Charlottesville a year ago resulted in senseless death and division,” Trump tweeted. “We must come together as a nation. I condemn all types of racism and acts of violence. Peace to ALL Americans!”
The riots in Charlottesville a year ago resulted in senseless death and division. We must come together as a nation. I condemn all types of racism and acts of violence. Peace to ALL Americans!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 11, 2018
I don’t know what Booker is hearing when Trump speaks, but, to me, the president couldn’t be clearer. He is on the record repeatedly and unequivocally condemning white supremacy and racism.
A simple search online could have revealed the truth to the senator had he cared to do 15 seconds of preparation before speaking on a national television show.
But instead of telling the truth, Booker chose to spread lies.
It is Booker who is making a case against Trump built on misleading statements and easily disproven falsehoods.
It is Booker who is making a case for hate.
The ends never justify the means. And if Booker’s “means” are lies and manipulation in an effort to redirect hate toward Trump rather than hold the actual perpetrators of the violence responsible, then it is Booker who is advancing the more dangerous agenda.
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