'Serial rioters': CNN's Chris Cuomo demolishes Trump's continuing dismissal of Nazi attacks
CNN's Chris Cuomo (Photo: Screen capture)

On Monday, CNN's Chris Cuomo blasted President Donald Trump's ongoing defenses of his characterization of the neo-Nazi demonstrations in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2017, in which he claimed that some of the far-right demonstrators were "very fine people" and insisted they had a legitimate grievance in protesting the removal of a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee.

"If you're talking about the violence that took place in Charlottesville, there was no protest going on that was nice and not nice," said Cuomo. "It was 100 percent an outgrowth of a march organized by white supremacists like Richard Spencer, featured speakers like David Duke. It was not part of any peaceful anything. Fact."

As evidence, Cuomo played a clip of the white supremacists marching in Charlottesville, brandishing tiki torches and bellowing, "Jews will not replace us!"

"Trump's own DOJ is charging four men in connection with the Unite the Right rally," Cuomo continued. "They call them 'serial rioters,' saying their group organizes, trains, and deploys to various political rallies to engage in acts of violence. Not about monuments. Not about good people. Not about both sides, okay? And Robert E. Lee. It was a Nazi rally. Period."

"Here's why it matters," said Cuomo. "As Jews are attacked in San Diego and Pittsburgh, Muslims targeted in New Zealand, black churches burned in Louisiana, this POTUS says white supremacy is not that big of a deal."

He played a clip of Trump dismissing white supremacists as "a small group of people." "Compare that to what his own FBI director says," he continued, showing FBI director Christopher Wray calling white supremacists "a persistent, pervasive threat."

"The only time he really talked about 'both sides' was when he was equating the Nazis with those there to fight him," said Cuomo. "What he called the 'alt-left.' That's when he was saying that, and that's the only time it's applicable because those are the two fights that we were having, right?" And yet, "This president goes after extreme Islamist terrorists all the time. Never qualifies like he just did about the white supremacists. He even says Islam hates us."

"But the fact is, the vast majority of lives taken by domestic terrorists last year, white supremacists, far-right extremists," Cuomo said. "2018 was the fourth deadliest year on record for homegrown extremists. Those are the facts. This deserves the volume. But it doesn't get it."

"Here are the questions we have to have answered," said Cuomo. "Why would a president with no fear of exaggeration falsely minimize this problem? Why does he call himself a nationalist? It's a term stained with prejudice. Why does he target Latino immigrants, exaggerating the same crime and violence stats as certain neo-Nazi groups? Why was he silent about Congressman Steve King when the rest of his party finally spoke out against his hate? I don't know that this president has a good answer for you on any of this. But you definitely deserve one, and we will ask those questions every chance we get.

Watch below: