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Greene Sponsors Bill to Award ‘Hero’ Kyle Rittenhouse a Congressional Gold Medal

© AFP 2021 / OLIVIER DOULIERYUS Republican Representatives Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, speaks to reporters after attending testimony by US Attorney General Merrick Garland before a House Judiciary Committee hearing on "Oversight of the United States Department of Justice," on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, October 21, 2021
US Republican Representatives Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, speaks to reporters after attending testimony by US Attorney General Merrick Garland before a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Oversight of the United States Department of Justice, on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, October 21, 2021 - Sputnik International, 1920, 25.11.2021
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Kyle Rittenhouse was earlier cleared of charges of homicide, attempted homicide and reckless endangerment in the deaths of Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26, and the wounding of Gaige Grosskreutz, 27, during the Kenosha, Wisconsin, riots on 25 August 2020. The teenager, who was 17 at the time, claimed he acted in self-defence.
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) has introduced a bill to award Kyle Rittenhouse the US legislative branch’s highest honor – the Congressional Gold Medal.
A summary of the bill, introduced on Tuesday, states that the measure would “award a Congressional Gold Medal to Kyle H. Rittenhouse, who protected the community of Kenosha, Wisconsin, during a Black Lives Matter (BLM) riot on August 25, 2020".
On 19 November, a jury cleared Kyle Rittenhouse, now 18, of five felony charges, including first-degree intentional homicide, stemming from a shooting incident that occurred during violent protests in Kenosha last summer.
U.S. President Donald Trump pauses as he announces his decision that the United States will withdraw from the landmark Paris Climate Agreement, in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, U.S., June 1, 2017 - Sputnik International, 1920, 24.11.2021
Trump Says He Welcomed Kyle Rittenhouse to Mar-a-Lago Following Acquittal
During his trial, the teen testified that he had acted in self-defence when he shot and killed Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26, and wounded Gaige Grosskreutz, now 27, during a Black Lives Matter riot in Kenosha, Wis. All of the victims were white. Rittenhouse and his lawyers had argued that he acted in self-defence when he used his AR-style rifle to protect himself from demonstrators who were attacking him.
"Kyle Rittenhouse deserves to be remembered as a hero who defended his community, protected businesses, and acted lawfully in the face of lawlessness. I’m proud to file this legislation to award Kyle Rittenhouse a Congressional Gold Medal," Greene said in a statement to The Hill.
Polarising Case
Several days after the verdict in the Kyle Rittenhouse case, American society continues to be divided over the acquittal. Greene was among those who had applauded the verdict, tweeting that the teenager was “one of [the] good ones”.
Other Republicans in Congress had similarly been quick to congratulate Rittenhouse as having “taken a stand” for Second Amendment rights.
GOP Congresswoman and and gun-rights activist Lauren Boebert cited the Second Amendment in celebrating the verdict, as did the National Rifle Association (NRA).
Rudy Giuliani, former Trump attorney and ex-mayor of New York City, slammed the “mainstream media” for its coverage of the Rittenhouse case.
Congressman Paul Gosar suggested that he might offer Rittenhouse an internship in his congressional office like his Republican colleague Matt Gaetz had earlier. Rep. Madison Cawthorn (R-N.C.) also offered Rittenhouse an internship following the verdict.
When asked about Greene’s bill, Joel Valdez, a spokesman for Gaetz, was cited by The Washington Post as saying:
“We are concerned that awarding Kyle with a Congressional Gold Medal will give him a big head during the internship with our office.”
Democratic activists and civil rights groups have decried the verdict as an example of a “miscarriage of justice” and “systemic racism” in the country's judicial system.
© REUTERS / POOLKyle Rittenhouse's trial, in Kenosha, Wisconsin
Kyle Rittenhouse's trial, in Kenosha, Wisconsin - Sputnik International, 1920, 25.11.2021
Kyle Rittenhouse's trial, in Kenosha, Wisconsin
Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers (D) said in a statement that irrespective of the ruling, the state had “work to do toward equity, accountability, and justice”.
President Joe Biden, who said earlier on Friday that he did not watch the trial, had said in a statement:
“While the verdict in Kenosha will leave many Americans feeling angry and concerned, myself included, we must acknowledge that the jury has spoken.”
The bill introduced by Marjorie Taylor Greene does not have any co-sponsors yet, and has been referred to the House’s Financial Services and Administration committees. It needs to be co-sponsored by at least two-thirds (290) of the members of the Democratic-controlled House.
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