President Trump “condemned in the strongest possible terms” the violence in Charlottesville, Va. sparked by a white supremacist rally that left at least one person dead when a car rammed into a crowd of people.
Trump, speaking from his Bedminster, N.J. golf course, said Saturday that “many sides” are responsible for the atmosphere of hate and tension on display in the central Virginia town.
“We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry, and violence on many sides, on many sides,” Trump said. “It’s been going on for a long time in our country.”
He added, “There’s no place in America (for this). What is vital now is a swift restoration of law and order and the protection of innocent lives.”
At least one person is dead from car crash in which a person drove a vehicle into a crowd of counter-protesters after the white supremacist rally was supposed to begin.
Video from the scene showed a car driving down a street crowded with leftist protesters on foot. The car rammed into the back of another vehicle and at least 19 people were injured. Charlottesville Mayor Mike Signer announced one person died from their injuries before 2:45 p.m. Saturday.
Trump did not answer a question shouted from reporters in New Jersey about how he would respond to white supremacists saying they are emboldened by him.
Trump said he spoke with Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe by phone and pledged “whatever other assistance is needed” from the federal government.
Trump said it’s sad that this kind of incident would take place when there are so many good things happening in the country.
“The country’s doing well in many ways,” he said. “We have record employment, we have unemployment the lowest it’s been in almost 17 years. We have companies pouring into our country.”
He added, “We have so many incredible things happening in our country, so when I watch Charlottesville — to me, it’s very, very sad.”
Trump thanked law enforcement for their efforts and called on both sides to come together and unite for the country.
“No matter our color, creed, religion, or political party, we are all Americans first,” he said. “We love our country, we love our God, we love our flag, we’re proud of our country, we’re proud of who we are, so we want to get this situation straightened out in Charlottesville.”
He said, “We have to respect each other and, ideally, love each other.”
This post originally appeared on Washington Examiner