"White supremacy is just absolutely intolerable in our society," Barr says

08/14/2017 04:00 PM

LEXINGTON — U.S. Rep. Andy Barr is not parsing words in his reaction to three dead and 20 injured after a car drove through a crowd of counter protestors where white supremacists and other alt-right groups were scheduled to take place in Charlottesville, Virginia over the weekend.

“What a just terrible tragedy and our thoughts and prayers go to those who died and the injured there and their families,” Barr said in an interview Monday. “This has particular resonance with me, because I attended the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. I love that community, it’s a wonderful community and to see that kind of hatred and violence happen in that town is very distressing personally to me.”

“This kind of hate — white supremacy is just absolutely intolerable in our society and I was glad to see the attorney general come out and designate this incident as domestic terrorism as it obviously was.”

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe declared a state of emergency Saturday after counter protestors and white nationalists clashed at a planned rally held by “Unite the Right.” The rally was intended to protest the removal of a statue honoring Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee.

On Saturday, President Trump said the condemned the “this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides,” in a public statement from New Jersey. Many politicians took offense with the “many sides” portion of Trump’s comment, and Barr agreed the first public statement from Trump missed the mark.

“Too much ambiguity on the first pass,” he said. “The administration, I was glad to see the vice president clearly with moral clarity certainly condemn the white nationalists groups there.”

Following the violence on Saturday, Lexington Mayor Jim Gray, a Democrat, tweeted that he was taking action to relocate the Confederate statues in Lexington.

Barr said those types of decision “need to be made by the community.”

“I think this decision will be made, should be made by a vote of the Urban County Council,” he said, adding that he felt it was appropriate for the local council make the decision.

The Lexington Republican said politicians need to work together to bring people together in the wake of the violence in Virginia.

“Leadership is about bringing people together,” he said.

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