Ocasio-Cortez accuses Trump of looking 'other way' on white supremacism

Ocasio-Cortez accuses Trump of looking 'other way' on white supremacism
© Stefani Reynolds

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezLawmakers 'failed us' says ICE chief Pelosi, Democratic leaders seek to quell liberal revolt over border bill Bronx restaurants thank Ocasio-Cortez for her endorsements MORE (D-N.Y.) accused President TrumpDonald John TrumpNew EPA rule would expand Trump officials' powers to reject FOIA requests Democratic senator introduces bill to ban gun silencers Democrats: Ex-Commerce aide said Ross asked him to examine adding census citizenship question MORE of signaling that he will “look the other way” on white supremacism, pointing to his remarks reacting to the killing of 50 people at two mosques in New Zealand last week.

The freshman lawmaker referenced Trump’s remarks last Friday, the day of the shooting, when Trump was asked if he thought white nationalism as a growing threat around the world.

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“I don’t really, I think it’s a small group of that have very serious problems,” Trump said. I guess, if you look at what happened in New Zealand, perhaps that’s the case I don’t know enough about it yet. We’re just learning about the person and the people involved. But it’s certainly a terrible thing.”

Ocasio-Cortez retweeted a tweet from the Southern Poverty Law Center that highlighted the question and the first part of Trump’s response to the question: “I don’t really.”

“What the President is saying here: ‘if you engage in violent acts of white supremacy, I will look the other way,’” Ocasio-Cortez wrote in her tweet. “Understand that this is deliberate. This is why we can’t afford to sit on the sidelines.”

 

Democrats have been raising alarm bells about the threat from white supremacism, which they have linked to Trump.

Democrats, joined by many Republicans, were particularly critical of Trump’s response to a march by neo-Nazis and other affirmed white supremacists in Charlottesville, Va., in 2017. After a woman was killed when a man attending the march drove a car into a crowd of counterprotesters, killing one, Trump said there were good people on both sides of the fights in Charlottesville.

The Southern Poverty Law Center in the tweeted retweeted by Ocasio-Cortez pointed to a rise in white supremacist hate groups between 2017 and 2018.

On Monday, the House Judiciary Committee confirmed it will hold hearings on the threat of white nationalist violence in the wake of the killings in New Zealand.

The committee, chaired by Rep. Jerrold NadlerJerrold (Jerry) Lewis NadlerNadler apologized after repeatedly calling Hope Hicks 'Ms. Lewandowski' at hearing Hope Hicks: Trump campaign felt 'relief' after WikiLeaks released damaging info about Hillary Clinton House hearing marks historic moment for slavery reparations debate MORE (D-N.Y.), intends to question officials with the Department of Homeland Security and FBI on current agency efforts to address the issue.

Separately, Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenAbigail Disney: 'We're creating a super-class' of rich people Is Big Tech biased? The Hill's Morning Report - In exclusive interview, Trump talks Biden, Iran, SCOTUS and reparations MORE (D-Mass.) at a CNN town hall on Monday night said white supremacists “pose a threat to the United States like any other terrorist group.”