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Gary Bauer / March 21, 2019

Time to Review

How many times have you cringed when you were reminded by friends or the media that President Trump said there were “very fine people on both sides” during the 2017 neo-Nazi riot in Charlottesville, Virginia?

How many times have you cringed when you were reminded by friends or the media that President Trump said there were “very fine people on both sides” during the 2017 neo-Nazi riot in Charlottesville, Virginia? 

We have heard this dredged up over and over again after horrible events like the Tree of Life synagogue shooting and the attacks in New Zealand. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) wasted no time connecting Trump to the Christchurch shootings via his Charlottesville remarks. 

I’ve even had good conservatives say to me, “Gary, this just keeps coming back to haunt him." 

How has this media myth taken root? Well, it’s fake news, and it’s time to review the tape. Kudos to Breitbart’s Joel Pollock who has thoroughly debunked this disgusting media myth. 

President Trump was not referring to the neo-Nazis who marched through the streets of Charlottesville as "very fine people.” He was referring to the people who peacefully gathered the day before to protest the demolition of a memorial to Robert E. Lee. 

Here’s a transcript of the relevant portion of the president’s remarks from that chaotic and combative press conference. It’s long, but it is important to understanding the context:

“TRUMP: Excuse me, excuse me.  They didn’t put themselves — and you had some very bad people in that group, but you also had people that were very fine people, on both sides…  Excuse me, excuse me.  I saw the same pictures as you did.

"You had people in that group that were there to protest the taking down of, to them, a very, very important statue and the renaming of a park from Robert E. Lee to another name…

"And you had people — and I’m not talking about the neo-Nazis and the white nationalists because they should be condemned totally.  But you had many people in that group other than neo-Nazis and white nationalists.  Okay?  And the press has treated them absolutely unfairly…

"REPORTER:  Who are the good people? Sir, I just didn’t understand what you were saying.  You were saying the press has treated white nationalists unfairly?  I just don’t understand what you were saying.

"TRUMP:  No, no.  There were people in that rally — and I looked the night before — if you look, there were people protesting very quietly the taking down of the statue of Robert E. Lee… The following day it looked like they had some rough, bad people — neo-Nazis, white nationalists, whatever you want to call them. But you had a lot of people in that group that were there to innocently protest, and very legally protest…”

In the first part of his remarks, the president specifically said he was not talking about neo-Nazis and white nationalists as “very fine people.” He said the Nazis and white nationalists should be “condemned totally." 

When a reporter got confused and asked him to clarify whether he was referring to white nationalists, the president answered, "No, no.” He then reiterated that he was talking about the people who were there the day before to protest the removal of the Lee statue.

The Left’s Agenda

Why am I bringing this up now? Because this deliberate smear against the president’s character is frequently brought up by his left-wing opponents to poison the minds of the voters in advance of the 2020 elections. They are using it to reinforce the false narrative that Trump is a racist.

But the left is also trying to drive an agenda. 

Everyone is correctly horrified by the shootings in New Zealand. Yet, why is there suddenly an avalanche of demands that any criticism of Islam be silenced? 

CAIR is demanding that Tucker Carlson and Jeanine Pirro be banned from Fox. 

Linda Sarsour says she is now “triggered” by prayers after the Christchurch shootings … because of the criticism of Ilhan Omar’s anti-Semitic remarks. I’m not making this up!

Hundreds of Christians have been killed in Nigeria and there’s no weeping and gnashing of teeth because the media have decided that Christian deaths don’t matter.

Of course, in Israel, there continues to be grinding campaigns of terror committed by Palestinian Muslims. Their families celebrate their “martyred” sons and daughters. If the media write anything about these attacks their reports are often morally ambiguous and frequently suggests that Israelis get what they deserve for living where they shouldn’t be living.

A Big Win

The Supreme Court gave the Trump Administration a big win Tuesday when it comes to enforcing our nation’s immigration laws. 

The left-wing Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals had attempted to severely limit the administration’s ability to detain and deport criminal illegal aliens. But the Supreme Court reversed the Ninth Circuit. The ruling by Justice Samuel Alito is also a slap at the left’s “sanctuary city” policies that prohibit local law enforcement from cooperating with ICE.

Predictably, this 5-to-4 decision fell along ideological lines. The five conservative justices upheld common sense and the rule of law, while the four liberal justices sided with the ACLU and illegal aliens.

It’s also a good reminder of just how much elections matter. Had “President Hillary Clinton” filled the Scalia and Kennedy seats, the decision would have been 6-to-3 the other way.

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