Iowa Lawmakers Denounce Violence in Wake of Virginia Protests

DES MOINES, Iowa  --  Violent protests in Charlottesburg, Virginia, this weekend brought widespread condemnation from most public officials.

Channel 13's Dave Price talked to politicians at the Iowa State Fair to see what they had to say about the recent events, where there was an unmistakable unity and display of pride for the United States and the people who have fought for the country.

There is also a new tribute: a bell that serves as a lasting symbol for the freedoms veterans risked their lives to protect.

"Just the discussion and dialogue that it generates, so that we don't forget that men and women are stepping up every day," said Governor Kim Reynolds.

It's a stark contrast to the moments the governor and many others would rather forget from Charlottesville, where racist groups were pushing white supremacy and protestors were pushing back.

"It's not who we are as Americans, it's unacceptable," said the governor. "So I think we need to forcibly stand up and say it's not going to be tolerated."

She stood up against it over the weekend, but one Iowa Congressman said he believes there is someone who did not.

"I was disgusted that the president didn't come out when he should have and just denounce the racism and those hate groups that were there," said Representative Dave Loebsack. "They were there for hate."

Approximately two days after the violence, the president finally did have something to say, stating, "racism is evil. And those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs."

Asked why he thinks President Trump did not say this sooner, Congressman Loebsack replied, "I don't really know for sure. It was clear that throughout the campaign he didn't distance himself from a lot of those folks."

The people who were part of the recent violence seem very distant from Monday's show of togetherness, honor, and patriotism.

"You talk about who we are as Iowans, and we are a diverse community and we represent all Iowans, and first of all we need to get back to talking and communicating and looking for opportunities where we can come together and drive positive outcomes," said Governor Reynolds.

The governor, Congressman Loebsack, and the rest of the Iowa delegation all said racist rallies have no place in our society.

On Monday, Congressman Steve King posted a tweet with a link to an article by Allen West and the caption, "I agree w\Lt. Col. Allen West's Charlottesville article. American history is to be learned & understood not erased."