Jen Psaki asked if Biden will apologize for calling Rittenhouse...

Posted 9 days ago


Asked if President Biden would apologize to Kyle Rittenhouse for suggesting he was a white supremacist, press secretary Jen Psaki deflected to President Trump's refusal to condemn white supremacy.

'Would the president ever apologize to the acquitted Kenosha shooter Kyle Rittenhouse for suggesting online and on TV that he is a white supremacist?' Fox News' Peter Doocy asked Psaki in a daily briefing.

'President Trump ... didn't just refuse to condemn militia groups on the debate stage he actively encouraged them throughout his presidency,' Psaki replied.

'So what we've seen are the tragic consequences of that - when people think it's okay to take the law into their own hands instead of allowing law enforcement to do its job.'

Psaki continued: 'The president spoke to the verdict last week. He has obviously condemned the hatred and division and violence from groups like the Proud Boys, and obviously that individual has posed in photos with, but beyond that I'll leave it to his comments around the verdict.'

During the trial, prosecutors presented a photo of Rittenhouse as evidence of him consorting with white supremacists, citing the use of the 'OK' sign, which has been co-opted as a sign of 'white power.' The photo at a bar in Wisconsin was from Jan. 5, 2021, the day he arraigned on charges related to the killing of two people at an August protest in Kenosha.

Rittenhouse, who was widely branded as a white supremacist after he fatally shot two white people at a Black Lives Matter protest, told Fox News' Tucker Carlson after his acquittal that he laid some of the blame for the vitriol against him on President Biden, who he accused of of 'defamation' and 'malice.' He said he is considering legal action against the president.

The 18-year-old, who spent almost three months in jail for the shooting, was cleared on Friday of homicide, attempted homicide and reckless endangerment in the shooting deaths of Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26, and the wounding of Gaige Grosskreutz, 27.

Jurors decided the rifle-wielding teen opened fire in self-defense as the trio chased and attacked him during the August 2020 riots in Kenosha, Wisconsin sparked by the police shooting of Jacob Blake, a black male.

On September 30, 2020, Biden, then the Democratic candidate, tweeted a video montage of far-right groups who Donald Trump the day before, during a presidential debate, refused to condemn.

Biden tweeted an attack on Trump, stating: 'There's no other way to put it: the President of the United States refused to disavow white supremacists on the debate stage last night.'

The tweet showed Rittenhouse, featured alongside the neo-Nazis marching through Charlotte and Proud Boys.

And in a 2020 interview with CNN's Anderson Cooper, Biden said: 'I don't know enough to know whether that 17-year-old kid, exactly what he did, but allegedly he's part of a militia coming out of the state of Illinois. Have... (Read more)