Tenney urges president to continue to denounce racial hatred

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Oneida County Congresswoman Claudia L. Tenney is urging President Donald Trump to continue to condemn racial hatred and bigotry in the wake of the Charlottesville, Va., clashes last weekend. 

“I urge the president to continue to denounce white supremacy, racism and intolerance and work to promote an atmosphere of unity in our nation during this troubling time,” said Tenney, R-22, New Hartford, in a statement released Wednesday.

“As someone who worked closely alongside the Jewish Community Center in Utica to resettle Bosnian refugees who were victims of ethnic cleansing in the former Yugoslavia, it is unconscionable to me that anyone in modern day America could display such hatred, violence and racism toward their fellowman,” she said said in her statement.

“On Saturday, I immediately condemned in the strongest terms possible this tragic display of white supremacy and called on Americans to join together to condemn these acts of intolerance and bigotry, which have no place in our society or our political discourse.”

Tenney’s statement was issued after her earlier comments, as reported by the Syracuse Post-Standard (syracuse.com), came under fire from Democrats. In that story the first-term representative supported the president for suggesting on Tuesday that “both sides” were to blame for the unrest in Charlottesville. 

On Aug. 12, white-supremacist groups, under a “Unite the Right” banner, demonstrated against plans to remove the statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee and their actions attracted counter-protesters. Chaos erupted, leading to many injuries and the the death of one woman.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, which is the official campaign arm of Democrats in the House of Representatives, said in a release Wednesday that Tenney defended Trump’s ‘both sides’ comments during a radio interview. DCCC spokesman Evan Lukaske said her remarks helped the president “defend Nazis, the KKK and white supremacists.”

Hannah Andrews, Tenney’s spokeswoman, said the DNCC had taken the congresswoman’s remarks out of context.

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