President Biden responds to the “not guilty” verdict in the Rittenhouse trial.
“While the verdict in Kenosha will leave many Americans feeling angry and concerned, myself included, we must acknowledge that the jury has spoken,” Biden said in a statement released by the White House.
Biden vows to “heal our country’s wounds” until “every American is treated equally, with fairness and dignity.” All while urging those protesting the verdict to remain peaceful.
“I urge everyone to express their views peacefully, consistent with the rule of law,” he said. “Violence and destruction of property have no place in our democracy.”
After returning to the White House after his physical and colonoscopy at Walter Reed hospital, Biden’s first reactions were blunter.
“I stand by what the jury has to say,” Biden said bluntly. “The jury system works, and we have to abide by it.”
He noted he did not watch the case.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the White House wanted to see “peaceful protests” in reaction to the trial while speaking to reporters on Friday afternoon.
“[W]e are supporting any effort toward peaceful protest, that’s certainly what we will continue to encourage, as anyone looks to have their voice heard regardless of the outcome,” she said.
Psaki said on Monday, she would not react specifically to the trial but condemned “vigilantes” armed with “assault weapons” in American communities.
President Biden is being called upon to apologize after his social media account referred to Rittenhouse as a “white supremacist” in a campaign video.
Wendy Rittenhouse, Kyle’s mother, criticized Biden publicly; she accused the president of defaming her son.
“I was so angry for a while at him, and what he did to my son, he defamed him,” Rittenhouse’s mother said in an interview with Fox News host Sean Hannity.
After the not guilty verdict on Twitter, Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) urged Biden to apologize to Rittenhouse publicly.