What transpired in Charlottesville, VA over the weekend was categorically abhorrent. Now more than ever, Americans must see their leaders take an unambiguous stance against the bigoted actions that led to the tragic death of one and the maiming of several dozen other Americans.

That is why I am urging my Republican colleagues to condemn this racist violence and recommit themselves to peacefully passing racist laws.

America has witnessed an act of domestic terrorism by a group that espouses white supremacy, and we must respond in kind. The sooner our party can agree that this intolerance-fueled bloodshed has no place in our society, the sooner we can get back to civilly chipping away at the voting rights of minorities through our political system like normal.

Let me be very clear: It is essential that my fellow conservatives in Washington acknowledge this murderous hatred for what it is before returning to nonviolently defunding public schools in black communities by way of the legislative process.

We must demand that bigots put down their clubs so that we can pick up our pens and pass laws that raise mandatory sentencing minimums that disproportionately harm minorities. I publicly called the violence in Charlottesville an “evil attack,” and having done so I am freed up to quietly pursue policies that will perpetuate poverty and incarceration for non-whites across this country. This is what I fought for as a senator, and it’s what I fight for now as attorney general.

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There is no debate that the violence we saw on the streets of Charlottesville was hateful and racist. We need to prevent the next racially motivated attack by making it clear to every bigot in this country that they must choose peace over violence, because our Republican policies will be way more effective when it comes to tranquilly maintaining white hegemony in America. The time to bring our focus back to the halls of Congress, where cooler heads can approve prejudiced legislation that makes life harder for anyone who isn’t white in a civilized manner, is now.