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Congressional memo reportedly advises Republicans to describe 'violence from the left' when asked about white nationalism

Congressional Republicans are ready to point the finger to the other side of the aisle.

A memo circulated by House Republicans advises lawmakers to deflect questions about gun violence and white nationalism to instead blame "the left" and "both sides," reports the Tampa Bay Times.

The talking points falsely described the shooting in El Paso, Texas, and other mass shootings as "violence from the left," though the alleged El Paso shooter targeted "Mexicans" and reportedly wrote a white nationalist, anti-immigrant screed that decried a "Hispanic invasion of Texas," per NPR, echoing President Trump's rhetoric surrounding immigration.

The inclusion of El Paso was actually a mistake, said a spokesperson for Rep. Gus Bilirakis (R-Fla.), who circulated the talking points. It was supposed to mention Dayton, Ohio, where another shooting occurred the same weekend. The alleged Dayton shooter was reportedly a supporter of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), though there is no evidence his alleged attack was motivated by leftist political views. The Tampa Bay Times reports that other shootings described as leftist violence are included "despite ambiguous, if not contradictory, evidence."

If asked whether "white nationalism is driving more mass shootings recently," Republican lawmakers are advised to steer the conversation in a way that argues both sides are to blame. FBI Director Christopher Wray told Congress most domestic terrorism cases "are motivated by some version of what you might call white supremacist violence." The Anti-Defamation League says 73 percent of extremist-related murder in the last decade were committed by right-wing extremists, including white supremacists, while 3 percent were committed by left-wing extremists.

"White nationalism and racism are pure evil and cannot be tolerated in any form," reads the reported document. "We also can't excuse violence from the left." Read more at the Tampa Bay Times.