White House press secretary Jen Psaki appears to be walking back comments made by President Donald Trump about now exhilarated shooter, Kyle Rittenhouse.
According to The Washington Examiner, Psaki made the comments queen questioned on Tuesday by a reporter about Biden’s comparison of Rittenhouse to white supremacists while Biden was on the campaign trail against President Donald Trump.
Rittenhouse, who was recently found not guilty on all charges against him in relation to the shooting of three men while at a Black Lives Matter protest that devolved into riots, has been in the news for several weeks as the trial concluded.
The now-18-year-old said in a recent interview that he believes the president defamed his character maliciously. Psaki addressed that assertion in Tuesday’s briefing:
“Well, let’s be clear what we’re talking about here. This is about a campaign video released last year that used President Trump’s own words during a debate as he refused to condemn white supremacists and militia groups, and President Trump, as we know from history, and as many of you covered, didn’t just refuse to condemn militia groups on the debate stage — he actively encouraged them throughout his presidency,” Psaki said in response to a question on the subject.
“So, you know, what we’ve seen are the tragic consequences of that when people think it’s OK to take the law into their own hands, instead of allowing law enforcement to do its job, and the president believes in condemning hatred, division, and violence. That’s exactly what was done in that video.”
The reporters weren’t giving Psaki an out, however, claiming that during the trial of Rittenhouse, just days ago, Biden said in a televised interview that Rittenhouse “was part of a militia coming out of Illinois.”
“The president spoke to the verdict last week. He has obviously condemned the hatred and division and violence we’ve seen around the country by groups like the Proud Boys and groups that that individual has posed in photos with,” she responded. “Beyond that, I’ll leave it to his comments around the verdict.”