A year after her father refused to specifically call out white supremacists at the “Unite the Right” rally, Ivanka Trump once again tweeted about Charlottesville and said what President Donald Trump wouldn’t. “There is no place for white supremacy, racism and neo-Nazism in our great country,” the president’s daughter and White House adviser tweeted late Saturday.
Last year after the self-proclaimed “alt-right” marched in Charlottesville, Virginia, the president was condemned for his comments which criticized violence and hatred from “many sides.” This year he tweeted about Charlottesville “riots” and condemned all racism but not white supremacy or neo-Nazism specifically.
Other members of the family spoke more directly last year, particularly Ivanka. After the Sabbath ended and Ivanka could return to social media, she denounced what happened without any qualifiers. “There should be no place in society for racism, white supremacy and neo-Nazis,” she wrote last August.
This year she’s channeling that strong message once again, even though president continues to refrain from calling out white nationalism explicitly. “One year ago in Charlottesville, we witnessed an ugly display of hatred, racism, bigotry & violence,” Ivanka tweeted late Saturday night in the first of three tweets.
Ivanka recognized that freedom of speech may protect far-right protests, but also unequivocally called them out. “Rather than tearing each other down with hatred, racism & violence, we can lift one another up, strengthen our communities and strive to help every American achieve his or her full potential!” she wrote in her final tweet.
The president’s tweets on Saturday about the Charlottesville anniversary said that he was fighting for “ALL Americans,” referencing prison reform and the African-American and Hispanic unemployment rates. But his explicit reference of the anniversary used the word “riots” and spoke of “all types of racism.”
“The riots in Charlottesville a year ago resulted in senseless death and division,” Trump tweeted. “We must come together as a nation. I condemn all types of racism and acts of violence. Peace to ALL Americans!”
Vice President Mike Pence also stopped short of condemning white supremacy or neo-Nazism in his tweet on Saturday. “Bigotry, racism and hatred run counter to our most cherished values and have no place in American society,” Pence wrote as part of a lengthy statement shared on his Twitter. He also said he and his wife Karen will “continue to pray — in these too divided times.”
Last year, Trump’s comments on the violence first mentioned “many sides” before the White House issued a statement to clarify that his condemnation “of course” included “white supremacists, KKK, neo-Nazis and all extremist groups.” But that only lasted a short while before Trump once again called out “both sides” while speaking in front of the media.
This year Washington, D.C., is on edge for the 2018 edition of the “Unite the Right” rally. A permit was requested for 400 at the “white civil rights” rally, while as many as 1,000 are expected at a counterprotest.
D.C. officials have promised to keep the two groups apart. Last year, a neo-Nazi drove his car into a group of counterprotestors and killed 32-year-old Heather Heyer.
Trump’s statements continue to draw criticism one year on, but Ivanka has not held back.