GOP senator: ‘It feels like violence is coming’

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August 18, 2017

A GOP senator on Friday evening warned that "it feels like violence is coming" and the president won't be able to calm the nation in the face of it.

Sen. Ben Sasse, a Republican, took aim at President Trump in a Charlottesville Facebook post.

August 18, 2017

A GOP senator on Friday evening warned that "it feels like violence is coming" and the president won't be able to calm the nation in the face of it.

Sen. Ben Sasse, a Republican, took aim at President Trump in a Charlottesville Facebook post.

In an extensive Facebook post, Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) shared thoughts he said were prompted by the violence last weekend in Charlottesville, Va., that left three dead and multiple injured.

He unloaded on President Trump and his administration over the response to the incident, which Sasse called out as motivated by white supremacists. Sasse charged that some of Trump's closest advisers see racial division as an opportunity.

However, he also blamed misunderstandings — some deliberate — on both sides of the aisle and argued that the current national debate should not be "a fight about historical monuments." Many state and local governments are taking steps to remove Confederate statues in the wake of the Charlottesville violence, which was originally organized to oppose the removal of a Gen. Robert E. Lee statue there.

Trump has criticized the removal of Confederate monuments, citing their historic value.

Sasse also said he doesn't believe Trump can bring the country together after the violence, both what was caused last weekend and what may come in the future.

"I doubt that Donald Trump will be able to calm and comfort the nation in that moment," Sasse wrote. "He (and lots of others) will probably tell an awful combination of partial truths and outright falsehoods."

"On top of the trust deficits that are already baked so deeply in, unity will be very hard to come by," he added.

According to Sasse, Trump's advisers are "whispering" that racial division would serve his agenda.

"Besides ability and temperament, I also worry that national unity will be unlikely because there are some whispering in the president's ear that racial division could be good politics for them," Sasse wrote.

"I worry that some on the left are also going to salivate over these divisions. Like the president's ear-whisperers," he continued. "They see a divided nation as good for their political objectives."

Sasse blasted white supremacy as a "cancer" and 32-year-old Heather Heyer's murder last Saturday as "an act of terrorism." Trump's response in the immediate aftermath of her death has been criticized for failing to blame white supremacist organizers.

"White supremacy and racism are un-American, period," Sasse wrote. "The heartbreak in Charlottesville was the fault of the white supremacists. Heather Heyer was murdered by an act of terrorism. The driver used his car to target public marchers."

Sasse's words were just the latest from Republicans rebuking Trump over a wild press conference on Tuesday in which Trump doubled down on his initial remarks and blamed "both sides" for the violence.

"Nobody wants to say that. But I'll say it right now. You had a group on the other side that came charging in without a permit, and they were very, very violent," Trump said of counter protesters on Tuesday.


Courtesy/Source: The Hill

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