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The Journal Gazette

Wednesday, August 16, 2017 2:20 pm

Hoosiers in Congress condemn white supremacists

Federal lawmakers representing northeast Indiana have denounced white supremacists and the deadly violence they incited last weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Rep. Jim Banks and Sens. Joe Donnelly and Todd Young stopped short of criticizing President Donald Trump by name for saying "there's blame on both sides" in the clashes Saturday between white supremacists and counterprotesters. But the three legislators did take to Twitter after Trump's contentious news conference Tuesday in which he also said there were "very fine people" among the Charlottesville demonstrators objecting to the planned removal of a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee.

Banks, R-3rd, wrote Tuesday night on Twitter: "All are created equal and endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights. We must reject white supremacy."

Donnelly, D-Ind., tweeted: "We must condemn, not condone, white supremacists and Nazis. As I've said, the hatred and bigotry in #Charlottesville is not reflective of our values as Hoosiers or Americans."

Young tweeted: "This is simple: We must condemn and marginalize white supremacist groups, not encourage and embolden them."

Young on Saturday had tweeted after the Charlottesville violence: "The love & compassion I see from Hoosiers daily is stronger than the fringe hatred on display in #Charlottesville. The former will prevail." Appearing Monday on CNN, Young said: "Such hatred, such bigotry, such evil which was exhibited by these white supremacist groups is not only unAmerican, it is anti-American."

Donnelly said Sunday on NPR: "I think that the white supremacists are focused on bigotry and hatred. And there's no place for that in our country." He tweeted Saturday: "We must stand together against hatred and bigotry that doesn't represent our values as Hoosiers or Americans."

Banks tweeted Saturday: "Whatever our political differences, we all must reject the hatred, bigotry, and racism on display in Charlottesville."

Rep. Jackie Walorski, R-2nd, whose district includes parts of Kosciusko County, tweeted Saturday: "I strongly condemn the violence and bigotry on display in #Charlottesville. Such hateful acts go against everything we value as Americans."