Fox contributor claims that Trump “immediately eviscerated” the KKK, just like Reagan

On Fox & Friends, Fox News contributor Tammy Bruce claimed that President Donald Trump, like Ronald Reagan, “immediately eviscerated” the Ku Klux Klan after receiving its support. In fact, after violence between neo-Nazis and white supremacists (including members of the KKK) and counter-protesters broke out in Charlottesville, VA, at a rally protesting the removal of a Confederate statue, Trump responded by condemning “many sides.” Though he explicitly called out the KKK two days later, in the same statement the president doubled down on his claim that “both sides” were to blame.

Trump has engaged in a disturbing courtship with the racist white nationalist movement and its media figures, including a failure to promptly denounce former KKK leader David Duke, and these groups have responded by calling him their “last stand,” praising him during his campaign, and acknowledging that he helped grow their movement. During the Charlottesville violence, Duke said, “We are going to fulfill the promises of Donald Trump. That’s what we believed in, that’s why we voted for Donald Trump.” While Trump's press conference was widely condemned by Republicans and Democrats alike for “equating activists protesting racism with the neo-Nazis and white supremacists who rampaged,” Fox News has continued to defend Trump every step of the way.

From the August 17 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends:

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ABBY HUNTSMAN (CO-HOST): When you talk about Ronald Reagan, he was a two-term governor of California. So he had experience on the political stage before getting into that Oval Office.


HUNTSMAN: And there was a time when the KKK endorsed Ronald Reagan. What did he do at that point? 

BRUCE: Well, he -- as they have with President Trump, and both men have effectively done the same. Reagan's theory was push back hard, be aggressive, defend yourself. And he, of course, immediately eviscerated the group, wrote to a variety of other groups and the U.S. civil rights groups as well, saying that “I reject this, this is an insult,” and President Trump has done the same. Now, the problem, of course, with today's media is, what is being reported? Will they report the truth? Are they spinning and turning his words? Politico the other day had to change part of their transcript, which had the president refer to “us” when he was talking about the Nazis and the Klan, and they had to admit for some reason that somehow the transcript got changed when he never made the comparison. So this is what Americans now have to deal with, but why the president like even Reagan did at the time, not relying on what the media is going to convey to the American people.