Partway through the day Monday, the Senate passed a resolution condemning white supremacist organizations while also urging President Trump to take a harsher stance against hate.
According to The Hill, the resolution was introduced last week by Sens. Mark Warner (D-VA), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Time Kaine (D-VA), and Cory Gardner (R-CO).
The endeavor cleared the upper chamber of the Senate with unanimous consent, underscoring the mark which last month’s events in Charlottesville have left on politics.
The measure formally condemns “the violence and domestic terrorist attack” which happened in Charlottesville, referring to 20-year old James Fields, Jr.’s terror attack on an alt-right rally’s counter-protesters.
Fields had used his sports car to ram into a crowd of counter-protesters, injuring 19 and killing 1 before being detained.
The Hill also recounts how the resolution urged the Trump administration to publicly push back against hate groups and white supremacist movements, asking the President and his cabinet to “address the growing prevalence of those hate groups in the United States.”
On top of demands to the commander-in-chief, senators asked U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions and the Justice Department to investigate “all acts of violence, intimidation and domestic terrorism” by white supremacists and associated groups. They also asked that Sessions and the Department of Justice prevent hate groups “from fomenting and facilitating additional violence.”
The resolution largely comes as response to Trump’s muted reaction to Charlottesville.
After the alt-right terror attack in Virginia broke across the news, the president stammered, delayed, and avoided condemning the perpetrators.
Rather than placing the blame solely on the shoulders of white supremacists – many of whom showed up to Charlottesville carrying semi-automatic rifles and brandishing Nazi emblems – President Trump deplored the violence on “many, many sides.” He also took several sentences to explain how the violence wasn’t his fault, by noting that hatred had existed under the Obama administration and in times before.
The resolution was thus likely an attempt to show that liberal and conservative politicians alike are united in their condemnation of a hateful movement which even the President of the United States was reluctant to vilify.