Disbelief and rejection swept across the Internet after Donald Trump again spread blame widely for an attack on counter protestors outside a white supremacist rally.
However, many of the President's supporters celebrated him for assailing violence from "the left".
After facing a firestorm of criticism for failing to explicitly condemn white supremacists after the attack, Mr Trump specifically rejected white nationalist groups like the Ku Klux Klan - before retreating to his earlier position by pointing to "blame on both sides" and assailing "alt-left" agitators.
Members of Congress from both parties were quick to disavow Mr Trump on Twitter, with a Democratic senator expressing "disgust and disappointment" and a growing cohort Republicans distancing themselves from Mr Trump - following business leaders who have abandoned the president in a growing cascade this week.
Many saw Mr Trump's unwillingness to firmly reject white supremacists as an affirmation of the president's true beliefs.
Supporters of Mr. Trump, meanwhile, including prominent conservative commentators and figures in the "alt-right" movement - which embraces a worldview founded on white identity - cheered the president for taking a stand.
Among those heaping praise was former KKK leader David Duke, who has had glowing words for Mr Trump since the presidential campaign.
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