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Gov. Malloy’s Prepared Remarks from Today’s News Conference in Hartford

(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Dannel P. Malloy delivered the following prepared remarks during a news conference this afternoon in Hartford:

In the wake of the tragedy at Charlottesville, a conversation has been amplified. It is not a new one. In fact, it is centuries old.

At certain points in American history it has risen more starkly to the surface. It has injected itself into the forefront of our political debate, our news media, and into private conversations at kitchen tables across our great nation.

And so it is happening now. It my sincere hope that, just as those other times, we will eventually come out on the other side a better republic. Still imperfect, but more compassionate, more fair, and more accepting of one another.

If that is to happen, we must all recognize that the values of equality and inclusivity are core parts of what it means to be American. These principles are part of who we are on a fundamental, societal level. They are what obligates us to speak up clearly and directly against President Trump’s remarks on these topics.

The President’s words this week have been nothing short of disgusting, and they need to be repudiated by compassionate people everywhere. That starts with our elected leaders. And unfortunately, right now leaders in the Republican Party are not doing enough to counteract the ignorance and intolerance coming from the highest office in our land.

It’s not enough to say that racism or bigotry are wrong. You have to name the people who are promoting those things. You have to speak out clearly to stop anyone who is enabling or promoting hate. Even if that person is the President. Especially if that person is the President.

I ask, where are Connecticut Republican leaders in this debate? Where are their voices speaking out against what the President is doing? A Republican Governor in neighboring Massachusetts unequivocally repudiated the President, as have other prominent Republicans nationally. Are Connecticut Republicans hoping this will blow over? Are they hoping they will get a pass?

If you are silent you are complacent. And if you are complacent, you are complicit. Any elected official who says they are focusing only on Connecticut issues is abdicating their responsibility as an elected official. This is a Connecticut issue. And even if it were not, does anyone seriously believe we are incapable of working on our state budget while also standing united against bigotry?

I’d like to know if Republicans in Connecticut agree with the President and his very clear stance on these issues. Do they agree there is blame on both sides? Do they agree that George Washington and Robert E. Lee are comparable – a person who founded our nation and a person who fought to rip it apart? Do they agree with their state party chair – their elected leader? Do they support him as he plays the President’s game of equivocating and pointing fingers at quote, ‘all sides’?

Connecticut Republicans should not hope for a pass on this one. They need to stand up and stand against the President and what he is doing. We all do.

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