In his initial response to the Charlottesville rally that turned deadly, Trump condemned "hatred, bigotry, and violence on many sides" but failed to disavow white nationalists. The president took to Twitter to call for unity: "We ALL must be united & condemn all that hate stands for. There is no place for this kind of violence in America. Lets [sic] come together as one!"
And yet, just one day later, the president released a 30-second spot that appeared to cater to his shrinking base of supporters, placing blame upon Democrats and the media for "obstructing" and "attacking" the president.
"Democrats obstructing. The media attacking our president. Career politicians standing in the way of success," the narrator asserts, before stating that Trump's "plan is working" and spouting off record-high stock market numbers and degree of military readiness.
"The president’s enemies don’t want him to succeed," the narrator says over a split-screen of television personalities like CNN’s Brian Stelter and MSNBC’s Chris Hayes. "But Americans are saying ‘Let the president do his job.'"
The nature of the ad is consistent with Trump's rhetoric. But it's eyebrow-raising to release the ad just one day after his call for Americans to "come together as one."
Trump's response to the violence in Charlottesville drew criticism from Democrats and Republicans alike. After white supremacists waving Swastika and Confederate flags took to the the streets in a violent demonstration that left one counter-protester and two state troopers dead, the president's initial statement failed to directly mention white supremacists.
In response to the criticism, the White House released the following statement today: "The President said very strongly in his statement yesterday that he condemns all forms of violence, bigotry and hatred and of course that includes white Supremacists, KKK, neo-Nazi and all extremist groups. He called for national unity and bringing all Americans together."