A former GOP congressional candidate who became a radio host was criticized after he suggested on Election Day, when the 17-year-old’s bail was set, “what if we need the teenage double murder suspect Kyle Rittenhouse during election day.
Jesse Kelly, who twice unsuccessfully ran for Arizona seats in 2010 and 2012, made the remark while tweeting a link to an article detailing how Rittenhouse was sentenced to $2 million in cash bail during his first court appearance in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Monday.
“But what if we need him tomorrow?” Kelly tweeted.
Rittenhouse is accused of traveling from his hometown of Antioch, Illinois, to join militia groups that participated in the Black Lives Matter protests in Kenosha on August 25.
The 17-year-old is accused of killing Anthony Huber and Joseph Rosenbaum in two separate shootings that night and injuring another.
His lawyers say the 17-year-old acted in self-defense and traveled to Kenosha to protect the city from the riots at the protests. They add that he was also there to provide medical care to the injured and that he is in no way associated with any white racist groups.
Kelly’s tweet comes after widespread fears of violence or intimidation of voters by far-right groups and militias on election night, with buildings in several cities boarded up in preparation for possible unrest on Tuesday.
Musician Questlove was one of those who spoke out against Kelly’s tweet, which seems to encourage the shooting of protesters on Tuesday.
“Well… that’s cool for all of you Twitterers,” he wrote to his 3.4 million followers.
Author Ron Hogan added: “I think the most important clue here is that Jesse Kelly, whoever he is, is a coward who would rely on a teenager to fight for him if it ever came to that. This makes him probably a perfect representative of the Republican Party.”
Kelly was asked to comment.
Note: Viacom/CBS has taken over the broadcast of the right-wing murder advocate Jesse for their streaming service “Pluto”.
If Pluto wasn’t another Quibi-like failure in waiting, more people would probably be annoyed about it, especially since Viacom picked up Bill O’Reilly next to this guy pic.twitter.com/KT14TWBkor
– Angelo Carusone (@GoAngelo) November 3, 2020
Good Lord, this is pic.twitter.com/gzfed2Mtja
– Charlie Warzel (@cwarzel) November 3, 2020
Ah yes, I see the pro-life party has registered. pic.twitter.com/SwkJKJ4vIF
– Brian Tyler Cohen (@briantylercohen) November 3, 2020
It is simply amazing that this tweet can still be heard. So crass. pic.twitter.com/4XovGhvrS3
– Parker Molloy (@ParkerMolloy) November 3, 2020
The teenager’s bail was set at $2 million after the Kenosha County District Court heard arguments that he was a flight risk. His lawyer, Mark Richards, asked Commissioner of Justice Loren Keating to set bail at $750,000, while the father of one of his victims, John Huber, requested bail of between $4 and $10 million.
“It’s not about self-defense,” John Huber told the court, Kenosha News reported.
“My son was killed. Another man was killed. They did not deserve to be killed. And we don’t have that society where we just let people get killed.”
One of Rittenhouse’s attorneys, Lin Wood, is trying to raise bail for his supporters. He claims that they were missing $600,000 on Monday.
“The $2 million is in cash for the required bail Not for attorney’s fees and expenses. Bail is now the priority,” Wood twittered.
“Without the support of freedom-loving Americans, Kyle will remain in prison. There is no evidence against him and there is video evidence that undeniably proves that he acted in self-defense”.