Welcome to WHAT NOW, a morning round-up of the news/fresh horrors that await you today.
On Saturday, a rally by white supremacists and neo-Nazis, scheduled to protest the removal of a Confederate era statue in Charlottesville, resulted in the death of a counter-protester and two police officers.
On the day of the deadly event, Donald Trump spoke from his vacation home in New Jersey to condemn “violence on many sides, on many sides.” Fifteen words later, he was naming former President Barack Obama.
A statement from the White House, issued on Sunday, more than 36 hours after the fascist rally began, condemned “white supremacists,” but also “all extremist groups.” It was attributed to an unnamed representative in the White House, not to President Trump.
Speaking at a joint press conference with Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos on Sunday, Vice President Mike Pence got closer to the mark, per a report from the White House pool, saying, “We have no tolerance for hate and violence from white supremacists, neo Nazis or the KKK. These dangerous fringe groups have no place in American public life and in the American debate, and we condemn them in the strongest possible terms.”
Let’s be clear: Trump himself has not come out to condemn neo-Nazis and white supremacists, who have been among the president’s strongest supporters since the beginning, by name. The president is supposed to speak today from Washington, where he’s expected to address Charlottesville. Be listening very closely for any efforts to blame “many sides” for the death of Heather Heyer, who was killed protesting fascism.
- I don’t know how to smoothly transition into lower-stakes news, but here goes: Shonda Rhimes is moving over to Netflix, ending a 15-year-long relationship with ABC News that produced such hit TV shows as Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal.
- As white guys with tiki torches roamed the streets of Virginia, the president’s re-election campaign released a video calling journalists his “enemies,” with photos of well-known journalists like Brian Williams, Rachel Maddow, Chuck Todd, and April Ryan to make clear just who he was talking about.