Kyle Rittenhouse Confirmed As Guest Speaker for Turning Point USA's 'AmericaFest'

Kyle Rittenhouse's post-trial publicity tour will continue this month with a guest speaker appearance at the "AmericaFest" organised by conservative group Turning Point USA.

The 18-year-old, who was cleared of all charges in relation to the deadly shootings in Kenosha, was unveiled on Tuesday night as a speaker at the event taking place between December 18 and 21 at the Phoenix Convention Center.

"HUGE NEWS! [Kyle Rittenhouse] Is Now CONFIRMED To Speak At the Biggest, Greatest Freedom Party Ever!," read a post on the Twitter account of Turning Point USA, the organization founded by Newsweek contributor Charlie Kirk.

The tweet continued: "This Event Is Gonna Be Unlike Anything You've Ever Seen...DON'T MISS OUT!"

Rittenhouse will appear alongside right-wing figures such as Tucker Carlson and Greg Gutfeld of Fox News, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, Donald Trump Jr. and former White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany.

"This four-day event is set to be the largest celebration of our constitutional rights and freedoms—featuring the best and brightest speakers in the country, dozens of like-minded sponsoring organizations, thousands of freedom loving patriots, and the introduction of musical talent with a number of very special concerts," read a description on the "AmericaFest" website.

"AmericaFest is going to be an event unlike the movement has ever seen by creating an experience that breaks the traditional norms of a political conference as we continue to bridge the gap between politics and entertainment to win America's culture war."

Rittenhouse has been embraced by the right and described as a patriotic hero since his acquittal in November over the killings of two men—Joseph Rosenbaum, 36, and Anthony Huber, 26—and the wounding of Gaige Grosskreutz, 27, during Black Lives Matter protests in Kenosha in August 2020. His attorneys argued that the teenager had been acting in self-defense.

In the weeks since the verdict, Rittenhouse has met with Donald Trump at the former president's Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, as well as giving a number of interviews on conservative media platforms.

One of his appearances was on Kirk's podcast. During the interview, Rittenhouse said he was having the AR-15-style weapon he had used in Kenosha destroyed.

"We don't want anything to do with that," he said.

Rittenhouse also criticized Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger for the way he had held the rifle during the trial while speaking to the jury.

Binger had his finger on the trigger while demonstrating to the court how Rittenhouse had been carrying the firearm during the protest in Wisconsin.

"I said, 'That's Gun Safety 101.' Loaded or unloaded, treat a gun like it's loaded," Rittenhouse said.

In a statement to Newsweek, Andrew Kolvet, spokesperson for Turning Point USA, added: "TPUSA Founder Charlie Kirk has already interviewed Kyle on his podcast and he's looking forward to having Kyle take the main stage and tell the world what he's been through, what he's learned and what he plans to do next.

"If the initial reaction to the announcement is any indication, it seems a lot of folks are excited to hear what he has to say as well."

Update 12/15/21, 10:50 a.m. ET: This article was updated to add a comment from Andrew Kolvet of Turning Point USA.

Kyle Rittenhouse americafest
Kyle Rittenhouse sits with his attorneys after a lunch break and waits for proceedings to start at the Kenosha County Courthouse in Wisconsin on November 9. Since his acquittal, the 18-year-old has been described as a "patriotic hero." Sean Krajacic-Pool/Getty Images