FACT CHECK: Have No Democrats Condemned Recent Riots?

Brad Sylvester | Fact Check Editor

A viral Facebook post shared over 81,000 times claims no Democrats have condemned the rioting that has occurred alongside recent protests.

Verdict: False

Several Democrats, including former Vice President Joe Biden, former President Barack Obama and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, have condemned the rioting, looting and violence that have occurred alongside some protests.

Fact Check:

Protests sparked after George Floyd, an unarmed black man, died on May 25 in Minneapolis police custody continue to take place across the U.S. Rioting, looting and violence have occurred alongside some of those demonstrations, according to The Washington Post.

A viral post falsely claims that not a single Democrat has condemned the rioting, saying, “93 Days of Riots, estimated 100 Billion in damages in 14 Cities and STILL NOT ONE DEMOCRAT CONDEMNS THESE RIOTS!” While House Democrats did block a resolution condemning violence and rioting in June, the Daily Caller News Foundation found multiple examples of Democrats speaking out against such action.

Biden, the Democratic presidential nominee, said in a statement that protests are “utterly American” but noted that “burning down communities and needless destruction is not,” for instance. His statement went on to condemn violence that “endangers lives” and that “shutters businesses that serve the community.”

In a Medium post, Obama made a similar comment, saying that the “small minority of folks who’ve resorted to violence in various forms, whether out of genuine anger or mere opportunism, are putting innocent lives at risk, compounding the destruction of neighborhoods that are often already short on services and investment and detracting from the larger cause.”

“Let’s not excuse violence, or rationalize it, or participate in it,” he added in the Medium post. “If we want our criminal justice system, and American society at large, to operate on a higher ethical code, then we have to model that code ourselves.” (RELATED: Were 2 Hospitals Set On Fire During George Floyd Protests In Columbus, Ohio?)

During a June 1 speech on the Senate floor, Schumer said, “The small minority who exploit the moment for violence and mayhem are wrong and do not advance the cause of justice.” Other Democrats, including South Carolina Rep. James Clyburn, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler, have also spoken out against such actions.

It’s unclear how the viral post arrived at the $100-billion figure, but the Insurance Information Institute states on its website that a preliminary estimate from insurance industry analysts puts the range between $500 million and $900 million in insured losses, though that may change “as insurers are resurveyed and data is refined.”

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Brad Sylvester

Fact Check Editor
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