Fox News primetime hosts are mounting a spirited defense of Kyle Rittenhouse, the 18-year-old who shot and killed two protesters last year at a chaotic demonstration in Wisconsin, as his trial reaches its final stages.
Tucker Carlson, who hosts the network’s highest-rated show, has devoted lengthy segments to the teenager’s innocence this week.
“When legitimate authority refuses to do its... sworn duty, others will fill the vacuum,” he said in one of three monologues on the case this week.
“But rather than acknowledge that obvious truth and accept the responsibility they bear, the people who made these riots possible in the first place decided instead to crush Kyle Rittenhouse.”
In a separate monologue Mr Carlson declared the teenager had “already won”, and said the prosecution had committed an “intentional perversion of justice”.
The Five host Greg Gutfeld said Mr Rittenhouse “did the right thing” by killing two people at the racial justice protest saying the dead men “didn’t deserve” better from him.
“People say that Rittenhouse never should have gone to Kenosha. The dead guys shouldn’t have gone there either,” Mr Gutfeld said.
“They should not have been anywhere on a street right? They should have been in jail or in an institution. Kyle’s victims, the two dead guys, deserved better from the government. But they didn’t deserve better from Kyle. He did the right thing,” he claimed. “He did what the government should have done.”
Mr Gutfeld then accused the media of leaving out crucial information about the case adding that “all Rittenhouse did was to fill the void that the government left open”.
“Those two people should never ever should have been out on the streets and it forced citizens to become the police,” he added. He also hit out at US president Joe Biden, calling him “a bigot”, and said that Mr Rittenhouse should sue the president.
Sean Hannity interviewed Mr Rittenhouse’s mother Wendy on Thursday night, where they discussed a lawsuit the teenager has brought against President Joe Biden claiming he was unfairly cast as a white supremacist.
“I have yet to see any evidence whatsoever that he is such a person,” Mr Hannity said.
Mr Rittenhouse, the Illinois teenager whose trial is underway, travelled to the Black Lives Matter demonstrations in Kenosha last year with a gun after riots erupted as police shot a black man, Jacob Blake. He said he sought to help protect property from unrest on the streets.
He fatally shot two people, Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26, and injured Gaige Grosskreutz, in what his attorneys say was an act of defence.
However, prosecutors argue that Mr Rittenhouse was a vigilante who wanted to kill everyone he shot that evening. He now faces charges of multiple counts of homicide and possession of illegal firearms.
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