US Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Georgia) calls for teenage Kyle Rittenhouse, newly acquitted of homicide charges, to receive the Congressional Gold Medal for “protecting” his community from rioters.
Greene introduced a bill which calls for the award of the prestigious medal to Rittenhouse because he “Protected the community of Kenosha, Wisconsin during a Black Lives Matter riot on August 25, 2020.” The legislation comes after at least two other Republicans in Congress – Reps Matt Gaetz (Florida) and Madison Cawthorn (North Carolina) – made internship offers at Rittenhouse.
The Congressional Gold Medal marks the highest honor that Congress can bestow. Recent recipients include police officers who defended the United States Capitol during the January 6 riots and American soldiers who were killed by a bomb blast during the chaotic Pentagon withdrawal from Afghanistan in August.
Rittenhouse, 18, was found not guilty last week of homicide and related charges in connection with shootings that left two dead and one injured among rioters. The Kenosha County Circuit Court jury apparently believed the teenager’s claims that he acted in self-defense while being attacked by men attempting to take his rifle, including one who pointed a gun to his head.
Greene’s bill is just the latest salute in the political battle over a case President Joe Biden and other Democrats have touted as an example of white supremacy – even though Rittenhouse and the three men he has shot were white – and self-defense. Biden reacted to last Friday’s verdict by saying he was “Angry and worried” and Vice President Kamala Harris said the jury’s decision showed that “There is still a lot of work to do” to make the American criminal justice system more “fair.”
Biden’s Republican predecessor, Donald Trump, met Rittenhouse Tuesday at the former president’s Mar-a-Lago club in Florida. Trump, who is not ruling out running for president in 2024, called Rittenhouse “A nice young man” and said prosecutors should never have brought him to trial, given that the teenager “Would have been dead” if he did not shoot the attackers.
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