Thursday, 13 December, 2018

Trump family pays tribute at Pittsburgh synagogue, protesters cry foul

Demonstrators call on President Donald Trump to increase the number of refugees resettled in the United States in a protest The City Of Pittsburgh And Shooting Victims Told Trump To Stay Away. He Didn’t Listen.
Kenny Thornton | 01 November, 2018, 03:20

US President Donald Trump, shrugging off objections from some critics that he was unwelcome in Pittsburgh, offered his condolences on Tuesday at the synagogue where 11 Jewish worshippers were fatally shot over the weekend.

Gasps from the hospital staff were heard as President Trump, First Lady Melania Trump, Ivanka Trump, and Jared Kushner passed by in an adjacent hallway.

The outpouring of support for the Jewish community and for immigrants points to the mass opposition in the working class and sections of the middle class to Trump's far-right policies.

The FBI conducted the investigation, leading to the indictment in this case. Placing stones at a grave or remembrance site is an ancient Jewish tradition.

The aftermath of the tragedy still pervaded life in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood where the synagogue is located.

Trump had called for a complete ban on Muslims entering the USA during the presidential campaign.

Levin, who also works in the flower shop, says she was accustomed to seeing Cecil and David every day.

But local and religious leaders were divided on whether Trump should be there.

On Monday, CNN anchor Alisyn Camerota tried to goad Myers into blaming Trump's "rhetoric" for inspiring the gunman who launched the attack, and pressed Myers to disavow Trump, who then planned to visit Pittsburgh Tuesday. Neither he nor Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf planned to appear with Trump. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall.

The four top U.S. House and Senate leaders declined an invitation to join the president on his trip, according to several sources.

An aide to McConnell said the Kentucky Republican was unable to attend because of a conflict with events in his home state.

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The exchange took place whilst the couple were visiting the Maori people of Te Papaiouru Marae in the Ohinemutu area of Rotorua. On Monday, the couple will travel to Abel Tasman National Park for a series of engagements about conservation.

The White House had invited congressional leaders of both parties-Mitch McConnell, Charles Schumer, Paul Ryan and Nancy Pelosi-to accompany him to Pittsburgh.

Questions have long swirled about the president's credibility as a unifier. The dead include a set of brothers, a husband and wife, professors, dentists and a physician.

Residents are divided. For Marianne Novy, Trump isn't wanted "unless he really changes his ways". "We need to be better than this".

Many held signs and banners referring to Trump's divisiveness and embrace of white nationalism. Werber said the Nazis were nationalists.

"Thanks for coming", another said.

"I could have claimed him as a father", Smith said.

Some blamed him for encouraging hatred and some said he should have waited until the funerals for the victims were over.

Just minutes before the synagogue attack, the shooter apparently took to social media to rage against HIAS, a Jewish organization that resettles refugees under contract with the U.S. government.

"President Trump is a great friend of Israel, of the Jewish state", he said. "We do not have enough public safety officials to provide enough protection at the funerals and ... at the same time draw attention to a potential presidential visit".

White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders continued in the same vein at a press briefing, saying: "The very first action that the president did was condemn these heinous acts". The outpouring of support for the Jewish community and anger against Trump had already by Tuesday morning resulted in some 70,000 people signing their names to the open letter. One of the families of the victims specifically asked not to meet with the president.

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