Republican senator: White nationalists can't be part of GOP base

Sen. Cory GardnerCory GardnerScarborough: Trump has chosen the 'wrong side' Moore, Strange advance in Alabama GOP primary GOP senator: Nazis should 'go back to their hole' MORE (R-Colo.) on Sunday ramped up his pressure on President Trump to call white supremacists out by name, saying they should not be a part of any political base. 

"White nationalists, white supremacists, they're not a part of anybody's base. They're not a part of this country. They're a part of hatred, they're a part of evil, and we need to stand up to that," Gardner told CNN's Jake Tapper on "State of the Union" during a discussion of violence at a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va.

"Whether it's the president of the United States, a senator from any of our great 50 states around the country, or our city councils and school teachers, call it for what it is. It's hatred, it's bigotry. We don't want them in our base, they shouldn't be in a base, they shouldn't be claimed as part of a base, and it has to be made crystal clear," he continued. 

"He should use this opportunity today to say this is terrorism, this is domestic terrorism, this is white nationalism and it has to stop, and I encourage the president to do so," he said. 

Gardner was one of the first of various Republicans to criticize Trump for not calling out white supremacists while condemning the violence in Charlottesville. 

 

Gardner's comments come a day after violence engulfed Charlottesville, leading to the death of at least one counter-protester.

Trump, who frequently lambasted former President Obama for not calling "radical Islamic terrorism," condemned the violence, but he blamed it on "many sides."

Trump first condemned the violence on Twitter, but he immediately drew backlash from former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke, who said the president was ignoring his base.