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“Denouncing hate should be universal:” Prayer service planned in Milwaukee after violence in Charlottesville

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MILWAUKEE -- Wisconsin lawmakers are coming out strong against President Donald Trump after the president's comments about the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia. There's a plan in Milwaukee to confront and combat racism.

Mayor Tom Barrett

From inside City Hall Wednesday, August 16th, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett urged elected officials across the state to denounce not only white supremacy, but also President Trump's continued assertion that protesters standing up to neo-Nazis are partly to blame for what happened in Charlottesville.

"I think there is blame on both sides and I have no doubt about it and you don't have any doubt about it either," President Trump said.

"This nation that we all love is better than this. This nation is better than our president," Barrett said.

Governor Scott Walker

President Donald Trump

On Wednesday afternoon, Governor Scott Walker drew a hard line on hate, but didn't comment on the president.

"It's not a Republican or Democrat issue. Denouncing hate should be universal. I think the white supremacist groups need to be dismissed not only by me, but by any official across the country," Walker said.

Others have taken it even further.

Congresswoman Gwen Moore

In a statement Tuesday, Congresswoman Gwen Moore called for President Trump to be removed from office: "We must come together to restore our national dignity that has been robbed by Donald Trump's presence in the White House."

Congressman Mike Gallagher

Across the aisle, Republican Congressman Mike Gallagher of Green Bay said: "The president needs to be crystal clear that hatred has no place in our society, but he is currently failing at it."

Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan said: "There can be no moral ambiguity."

House Speaker Paul Ryan

"Racism is a grave sin, and there's no getting around that," Father Tim Kitzke with the Archdiocese of Milwaukee said.

Father Tim Kitzke

Father Kitzke is helping to organize a prayer gathering in Milwaukee, set for Friday. He's asking leaders at every level to be compassionate and truthful.

"Seek the better part of your spirit. Seek the better part of what it means to be human and making your reactions," Kitzke said.

The prayer service will be held Friday, August 18th at 12:15 p.m. at the Cathedral of John the Evangelist in downtown Milwaukee to pray for reconciliation and healing.