Kyle Rittenhouse, who faces life in prison if convicted of murder after the fatal shooting of two people during protests last summer, could get a job offer from a Republican in Congress if he is acquitted.
Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz said his office may ask 18-year-old Rittenhouse to consider working on Capitol Hill.
“Kyle Rittenhouse would probably make a good intern in Congress,” Gaetz said during his Wednesday night speech on Newsmax. “We can contact him and find out if he will be interested in helping the country in other ways.”
Jury deliberations continue after Rittenhouse’s murder trial ended Monday in Wisconsin. Rittenhouse pleaded not guilty after shooting two people and wounding a third during protests in Kenosha, Wisconsin in August 2020.
The case sparked a fierce debate over the border between self-defense and violent vigilance, according to The Washington Post. From Tuesday, the jury decides the fate of the teenager.
Gaetz, an outspoken conservative, said Rittenhouse deserves an acquittal. The congressman, who previously stated that the teenager acted in self-defense, is one of several Republicans who have publicly defended Rittenhouse.
JD Vance, who is running for the Ohio State Senate, this week called Rittenhouse’s trial a “farce.” Florida Rep. Anthony Sabatini tweeted last year that Rittenhouse should run for Congress, prompting some to call for the MP’s resignation. And former President Donald Trump spoke out on the case shortly after the shooting, saying that Rittenhouse “would probably have been killed” if he had not fired his weapon.
Rittenhouse carried a semi-automatic rifle on August 25, 2020 during protests that erupted after police shot Jacob Blake in Kenoshi. Rittenhouse, then 17, fatally shot 36-year-old Joseph Rosenbaum and 26-year-old Anthony Huber. He also shot and wounded Gyge Grosskreutz, who was 26 at the time.
While prosecutors argued that Rittenhouse acted recklessly, provoking violence by showing up with a loaded gun, Rittenhouse and his team of lawyers argue that he acted in self-defense and was there to protect the business. The case gained national attention after months of Black Lives Matter protests in cities across the country.
“I defended myself,” Rittenhouse said at the booth last week.
Gaetz, speaking on Newsmax on Wednesday, talked about another high-profile lawsuit that was closed earlier that day. Jacob Chansley, the man who wore paint on his face and wore a horned cap during the January 6 Capitol riots, was sentenced Wednesday to 41 months in prison – a result that Gaetz says is “defying justice.”
“This QAnon shaman seems to be a relatively harmless nonviolent vegan,” he told Newsmax anchor Grant Stinchfield.
The federal judge who sentenced Chansley on Wednesday said that while he believed the man was “sincere in [his] remorse, “he called what he did on January 6” terrible. “
“This attack on democracy was abhorrent,” he said, adding, “What you did here actually hindered the functioning of the entire government.”
Stinchfield, an anchor for Newsmax, told Gatsu he could face competition when trying to hire Rittenhouse.
“I want him to be here at Newsmax,” said the host. “Maybe he can do an internship at Stinchfield too. He will have all kinds of job offers. “