Sen. Sullivan calls out neo-Nazis; Critics abound

An impromptu memorial for Heather Heyer, Charlottesville. Photo: Bob Mical/CC 2.0

After violence broke out in Charlottesville, Va. over the weekend, both of Alaska’s U.S. senators condemned the violent “Unite the Right” demonstrations.

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Sen. Dan Sullivan issued a strongly worded statement that singled out the alt-right and their allies. 

Hundreds of Facebook users added their own comments to his post. Some thanked Sullivan for specifically calling out far-right groups. But quite a few commentators defended the White nationalists, or complained Sullivan should have allotted equal blame to counter-protestors on the left.

Of over 100 comments that appeared on Sullivan’s post, just over half criticized the senator for condemning only the neo-Nazi side. Nearly all of the comments appear to have come from Alaskans.

Sen. Lisa Murkowski also weighed in on Facebook on Sunday.

Murkowski did not specifically name-check the alt-right or neo-Nazis. Comments on her post were more mixed.

Liz Ruskin is the Washington, D.C., correspondent for Alaska Public Media. She reports from the U.S. Capitol and from Anchorage. Reach her at

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