President Trump on Saturday strongly condemned the turbulence in Charlottesville, Va., where white nationalists clashed violently with counterprotesters, leaving at least one person dead.
“We’re closely following the terrible events unfolding in Charlottesville, Va. We condemn int he strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence — on many sides, on many sides,” Trump said from his golf resort in Bedminster, N.J.
Trump suggested that the clashes were especially unfortunate given his administration’s successful record. He touted his efforts to renegotiate trade deals and the unemployment rate.
“Our country is doing very well in so many ways. We have a record — just an absolute record — employment. We have unemployment, the lowest it’s been in almost 17 years,” he said, speaking at an event meant to mark signing legislation addressing veterans’ issues.
He continued: “We have companies just pouring into our country: Foxconn and car companies and so many others. They’re coming back to our country. We’re renegotiating trade deals to make them great for our country and great for the American worker. We have so many incredible things happening in our country. So when I watch Charlottesville, to me it’s very, very sad.”
Trump was speaking just moments after Charlottesville Mayor Mike Signer said a person had died after a car plowed into a crowd of counterprotesters. Shocking video of the incident showed the gray vehicle speeding into the group at high speed before reversing itself. NBC News reported that 19 people were injured, according to the University of Virginia hospital.
“I am heartbroken that a life has been lost here. I urge all people of good will–go home,“ Signer said.
Rescue personnel help injured people after a car ran into a large group of protesters after an white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, Aug. 12, 2017. The nationalists were holding the rally to protest plans by the city of Charlottesville to remove a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee. There were several hundred protesters marching in a long line when the car drove into a group of them. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
Both Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe and Charlottesville issued statements of emergency.
The “Unite the Right” rally, which included neo-Nazis and Ku Klux Klan members, was a protest against the planned removal of a Confederate statue from Charlottesville. The white supremacists clashed…