Rep. Watson Coleman To Co-Sponsor Resolution To Censure, Condemn, Trump

Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman is co-sponsoring a House resolution to censure and condemn Pres. Donald Trump. (File Photo).

U.S. Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman will join two of her colleagues in the House of Representatives in introducing a resolution to censure and condemn Pres. Donald Trump for his comments regarding the violence in Charlottesville, Va.

Coleman (D-12) said in her Twitter account Aug. 16 that Trump “again insults the values our nation is built upon.” The censure resolution, she said, will “hold him accountable.”

Trump’s comments on the Aug. 12 violence during a “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville – during which one person was killed and about 20 others injured when an Ohio man allegedly drove a car into a group of counter-demonstrators – ignited a firestorm among critics and former supporters.

Among the comments Trump made in an Aug. 15 press conference was that the “Unite the Right” demonstrators – comprised mainly of avowed neo-Nazis and other white supremacists – was that there were “some fine people” demonstrating against removing a statue of Civil War Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee.

The measure scheduled to be introduced on Aug. 17 by Watson-Coleman, Rep. Jerold Nadler (D-NY) and Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) charges that Trump “has provided tacit encouragement and little to no denunciation of white supremacist groups and individuals who promote their bigoted, nationalist ideology and policies” and has “failed to provide adequate condemnation and assure the American people of his resolve to opposing domestic terrorism.”

Trump has also “surrounded himself with, and cultivated the influence of, senior advisors and spokespeople who have long histories of promoting white nationalist, alt-Right, racist and anti-Semitic principles and policies within the country,” according to the resolution.

The resolution says that the House of Representatives “does hereby censure and condemn President Donald Trump for his inadequate response to the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia on August 12, 2017, his failure to immediately and specifically name and condemn the white supremacist groups responsible for actions of domestic terrorism, for re-asserting that ‘both sides’ were to blame and excusing the violent behavior of participants in the ‘Unite the Right’ rally, and for employing people with ties to white supremacist movements in the White House, such as Steve Bannon and Sebastian Gorka,” and “does hereby urge President Donald Trump to fire any and all White House advisors who have urged him to cater to the alt-Right movement in the United States.”

In an Aug. 15 statement, Watson-Coleman said that Trump’s reiteration of his belief that “both sides were to blame” for the Charlottesville violence was another instance of his squandering “an opportunity to show and prove that he is President for all Americans.”

“His continued false equivocation following the Charlottesville attacks is not only disgusting, it is dangerous,” she said in the statement. “Our nation is looking for true leadership and unity, but this President prefers to pander to his fringe supporters than to clearly state what we all know to be true: racism has no place in this country—full stop. It is clear, the organizers of the ‘Unite the Right’ Rally and its armed, torch-wielding participants sought out and initiated the violence that led to the tragic loss of Heather Heyer’s life and the deaths of two Virginia State Troopers.”

“Our federal government has a responsibility to protect the American people, but it is difficult for us to carry out that responsibility when the Commander-in-Chief refuses to honestly acknowledge the harm that Neo-Nazis, Neo-Confederates, white nationalists, and other hate groups have on our society,” she said in the statement. “Both the Confederacy and the Nazi regime were open enemies to the United States, and their hate led to the deaths of more than a million Americans. There is nothing about either one of these ‘movements’ worthy of celebration, emulation, or pride. But, when the President of the United States gives comfort to these sympathizers by minimizing their culpability in the violence they sew, he dishonors the office of the Presidency and insults the very values that our nation is built upon.”

Coleman’s district spans 31 towns, including Franklin, in four counties – Somerset, Middlesex, Mercer and Union.


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