Trump Defends 2017 Response to Charlottesville Attack, Praises Confederate General

The president, who was criticized for saying there were 'very fine people on both sides' of clashes between white supremacists and anti-racism demonstrators, says he answered question 'perfectly'

U.S. President Donald Trump departs for travel to Indianapolis, Indiana from the White House in Washington, U.S., April 26, 2019.
Jonathan Ernst/Reuters

President Donald Trump is trying once more to defend his remarks about racial violence in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Trump was asked Friday about his 2017 comments, when he said there were “very fine people on both sides” of a clash between white supremacists and anti-racist demonstrators.

>>Read more: Charlottesville, Virginia: A predictable atrocity in Donald Trump's America | Opinion 

"If you look at what I said, you will see that that question was answered perfectly," Trump told reporters on Friday. 

He said he was referring to some who were protesting the removal of a statue of Robert E. Lee, the Confederate general.

Trump praised Lee as “a great general, everybody knows that.”

In his remarks two years ago, Trump did mention the Lee statue but also said “there is blame on both sides” of the clash, which left one anti-white supremacist demonstrator dead.

The debate over Trump’s remarks resurfaced after former Vice President Joe Biden launched his Democratic presidential campaign by condemning them.