Vice President Kamala Harris’ passionate 2019 endorsement of Jussie Smollett’s hate crime allegations resurfaced this weekend ahead of the start of the actor’s trial for allegedly lying to police about being attacked.
In January 2019, Harris, then a U.S. senator from California, went further than her fellow presidential candidates and other prominent Democrats who rallied behind Smolllett”s pose as a victim of Trump’s supposedly bigoted America.
Like Smollett’s friends in Hollywood and the media, Harris also gushed about the actor’s character.
After a nearly three-year legal saga, jury selection began Monday in the trial of Smollett on six charges of felony disorderly conduct.
- Prosecutors have accused Smollett, who is black and gay, of lying to Chicago police on Jan. 29, 2019, when reported he had been the victim of a violent hate crime.
- Smollett said two masked men attacked him outside his Chicago apartment at 2 a.m., placing a noose around his neck and pouring bleach on him while hurling racist and homophobic slurs at him and shouting “this is MAGA country.”
- But two brothers who knew Smollett, Abimbola and Olabinjo Osundairo, told investigators he recruited them to stage the attack, and the police concluded the actor lied in an attempt to promote his career.
- A special prosecutor, Dan Webb, won Smollett’s indictment after the Cook County state attorney, Kim Foxx, brought and then abruptly dropped a similar case against him, prompting public outcry.
Smollett — who has pleaded innocent in the case and has stuck to his story about being attacked — lost his role on the “Empire” TV show and became, at least on the right, a symbol of woke cultural derangement during Donald Trump’s presidency.
President Joe Biden also tweeted support for Smollett on Jan. 29, 2019.