Donald Trump gave a press conference on Tuesday, initially billed to be about manufacturing, but ended up morphing into a rambling defence of his slow condemnation of white supremacists in Charlottesville.
He denied that he took too long to condemn white supremacists:
I didn't wait long. I didn’t wait long. I didn’t wait long.
I wanted to make sure, unlike most politicians, that what I said was correct, not make a quick statement.
The statement I made on Saturday, the first statement, was a fine statement, but you don't make statements that direct unless you know the fact.
And it takes a little while to get the facts.
You still don't know the facts. And it is a very, very important process to me. It is a very important statement.
So I don't want to go quickly and just make a statement for the sake of making a political statement. I want to know the facts.
He's never appeared paticularly bothered about facts before, and uses "radical Islamic terrorism" as a kneejerk catchphrase, so this statement is a little hard to swallow.
He then condemned counter protesters, drawing focus away from the man currently under investigation for allegedly driving a car into a crowd of counter demonstrators, injuring 19 and killing one 32 year old woman, Heather Meyer:
Okay, what about the alt-left that came charging at [indiscernible] – excuse me – what about the alt-left that came charging at the, as you say, the alt right? Do they have any semblance of guilt?
What about this? What about the fact that they came charging – they came charging with clubs in their hands swinging clubs? Do they have any problem? I think they do.
As far as I’m concerned, that was a horrible, horrible day. Wait a minute, I'm not finished. I'm not finished, fake news. That was a horrible day.
I will tell you something. I watched those very closely, much more closely than you people watched it. And you had, you had a group on one side that was bad. And you had a group on the other side that was also very violent. And nobody wants to say that, but I'll say it right now. You had a group – you had a group on the other side that came charging in without a permit, and they were very, very violent.
He was later asked whether he would go to Charlottesville by reporters at the conference.
Did you know I own a house? It’s in Charlottesville, oh boy. It’s in Charlottesville, you’ll see.
He was asked whether he was referring to the Trump winery.
It’s a, it’s a, it is the winery.
I mean, I know a lot about Charlottesville. Charlottesville is a great place that's been very badly hurt over the last couple of days. I own – I own actually one of the largest wineries in the United States. It’s in Charlottesville.
Reporters didn't take well to the advertising opportunity taken by the President in the middle of a critical press conference:
The winery in question said his claim that he owned the property was incorrect:
A legal disclaimer on the website reads:
Trump Winery is a registered trade name of Eric Trump Wine Manufacturing LLC, which is not owned, managed or affiliated with Donald J. Trump, The Trump Organization or any of their affiliates.
Trump bought the winery in 2011, and then handed control to his son.
So, yeah, "not owned, managed or affiliated with" is a teensy bit of a stretch. It still has the Trump name all over it.
Mr Trump's attitudes towards his duties in the Oval Office continue to astonish many, and is reflected in his approval ratings - he's the least popular President for decades.