On Monday, the president finally explicitly condemned the neo-Nazis who had staged violent, deadly protests in Charlottesville this weekend, after his “many sides” comment allowed them to skirt responsibility. (Andrew Anglin, founder of the neo-Nazi site the Daily Stormer, said that Trump’s comments “implied the antifa are haters. There was virtually no counter-signaling of us all.”) But only a few hours later he made it clear that he had been extremely reluctant to call out these white supremacists by name:
Trump is all but screaming like a petulant racist baby, “They MADE me do it!” At the same time, he’s winking to white supremacists that he’s still with them.
As The New York Times reported, Trump had been taking his cues from another white nationalist in the White House, Steve Bannon, who advised him against criticizing his far-right base. And lest there be any confusion about where he stood, on Tuesday he retweeted one of his racist supporters, who posted a picture of a train running over a CNN reporter. As many pointed out, this was horribly inappropriate after a woman died in Charlottesville after being run over by a white supremacist’s car.
Trump deleted the tweet, but he had made his true feelings clear, as he has done all weekend and during his entire presidency.