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Fine People on Both Sides: Virginia Republican Says Hating the KKK Makes You A Hate Group

Press Releases

WASHINGTON — The Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee is calling on GOP General Assembly candidates to condemn Republican Hanover Board of Supervisors Chairman W. Canova Peterson for tolerating hate in Virginia and equivocating about those who stand up to racists with the Klu Klux Klan.

In a Richmond Times-Dispatch column, Michael Paul Williams detailed Hanover Republican elected officials’ tolerance for hate.

Instead of denouncing the Klan on Saturday, Peterson said, “I 100% support citizens of this community and country being able to express their opinions — as long as they do it peacefully.”

He downplayed the KKK’s hateful appearance by saying it was “a very small gathering,” that “it certainly wasn’t a Klan rally,” and “all their faces were exposed.”

And then Peterson insulted those who stand up to the KKK:  “If you hate [the KKK], you’re a hate group too.”

In reaction to the Republican supervisor’s comments, the DLCC is calling on GOP General Assembly candidates to condemn all equivocation on the KKK and the Virginians who stand up to the hate group.

“There are not good people on both sides,” said DLCC press secretary Matt Harringer. “People hate the KKK because they are racists who terrorized African-Americans across our country. It’s disgusting that an elected official would equate the KKK with those who stand up to racists — and every GOP candidate should condemn Supervisor Peterson’s comments.”