House Democrat calls for federal white nationalist list

Thursday, August 8, 2019
By Paul Martin

by Susan Ferrechio
August 08, 2019

A House Democrat wants the Trump administration to compile a list of “potential” white nationalists, accusing the president of helping spread the movement.

”This President has taken the smoldering ember of white nationalism, doused it with rhetorical gasoline, and watched it spread like wildfire,” Rep. Emanuel Cleaver of Missouri said in a statement.

“White nationalists time and time again have used the exact language of this President to condone their violence against immigrants, Muslims, and other minorities,” said Cleaver, 74, a former Kansas City mayor and ordained United Methodist pastor. “If the President truly wants to stamp out these extremists, then I call on him and his administration to label these white supremacist groups, investigate them, and name the El Paso shooter exactly what he is: a terrorist.”

The president has repeatedly denounced white nationalism but Democrats blame him for incidents linked to the movement, including the El Paso, Texas shooting, which claimed 22 lives.

Cleaver made the request in a letter sent Thursday to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Attorney General William Barr, and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

Cleaver asked the Treasury Department to label the El Paso shooter a “Specially Designated Global Terrorist.”

Cleaver said far-right extremism is increasing in the United States and noted testimony in July by FBI Director Christopher Wray that white supremacy is behind a rise in domestic terrorism.

“The growing threat of white nationalist violent extremism can no longer be ignored,” Cleaver said in a statement. “As the leader of the nation and all Americans, it is incumbent on the President to protect Muslims, Jews, immigrants, and other minorities from white nationalists,” he said. “By formally labeling this individual a terrorist, it allows the Treasury, State, and Justice Departments to use the full set of tools at their disposal to attack this problem head on, which is exactly what this President should be doing.”

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