U.S. President Donald Trump's delayed denouncement of the Ku Klux Klan, neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and other hate groups as "criminals and thugs" has disappointed and even angered some members of these groups, who supported his campaign and felt emboldened by his presidency.
Trump initially blamed "many sides" after a participant in a white nationalist rally in Virginia drove into a crowd and killed a counterprotestor on Saturday.
Under immense bipartisan pressure to issue a stronger statement, Trump on Monday explicitly denounced the KKK, white supremacists and neo-Nazis as "repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans."
Richard Spencer, a prominent white nationalist and a leader of the so-called alt-right, said Trump's statement was "vapid nonsense."
Occidental Dissent, a white nationalist website, posted a statement that said whites had been "deserted by their president." The article on the website continued, saying that "what Donald Trump has done today is an unforgivable betrayal of his supporters." Former KKK leader David Duke chimed in as well, saying that the statement wouldn't help Trump.
The “alt-right” or “alternative right” is a name currently embraced by some white supremacists and white nationalists to refer to themselves and their ideology, which emphasizes preserving and protecting the white race in the United States in addition to, or over, other traditional conservative positions such as limited government, low taxes and strict law and order.
The movement has been described as a mix of racism, white nationalism and populism.
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