- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin spoke out Wednesday against white supremacists and neo-Nazis who held a violent rally in Virginia, saying President Trump shares his views that bigotry cannot be tolerated in the U.S.

“This is an affront to American ideals,” Mr. Shulkin told reporters. “This is an affront to civilization. We have fought against these beliefs. We’re not going to allow ourselves as a country to be drawn back there.”

It was a rare comment by an administration official since Mr. Trump received renewed condemnation Tuesday for saying that “both sides” were to blame for violence in clashes between leftist protesters and white supremacists in Charlottesville last weekend.

Mr. Shulkin, speaking at the president’s golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey, at the signing of a bill for veterans’ education, said Mr. Trump “has done a good job of speaking for himself.”

“He’s denounced bigotry, hatred, violence, Nazis, white supremacists,” Mr. Shulkin said. “I think he has been very clear that this was not acceptable to him, that he has denounced them.”

He said there is “strong consensus” in the administration.

“We’ve heard from the vice president, we’ve heard from the Joint Chiefs of Staff, we’ve heard from Ivanka Trump, we’ve heard from many leaders throughout the country,” he said.

As for himself, Mr. Shulkin said, “I am outraged by the behavior that I’ve seen by the Nazis and the white supremacists.”

He said he met earlier in the day with a 94-year-old veteran of the D-Day invasion during World War II.

“They were fighting the Nazis,” Mr. Shulkin said. “It is a dishonor to our country’s veterans to allow the Nazis and the white supremacists to go unchallenged. It’s important that we all express our opinions about this. I do feel an obligation as an American.”

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