DuPage County

DuPage Democrat under fire for saying Wisconsin parade tragedy was ‘karma’ for Rittenhouse acquittal

A Downers Grove woman has resigned from her position as social media director for the Democratic Party of DuPage County after coming under fire for a tweet she wrote after the Christmas parade tragedy in Wisconsin.

The local party announced Monday afternoon that it had cut ties with Mary Lemanski and denounced her remarks.

In a now-deleted tweet, Lemanski posted that the crash that killed at least five people and injured more than 40 others was “karma” for the acquittal of Kyle Rittenhouse.

On Monday, she posted another tweet announcing her resignation as the social media director of the Democratic Party of DuPage County.

“I unfortunately made some remarks that were not in good taste regarding the Waukesha tragedy yesterday,” she wrote. “I am accepting the consequences of my free speech.”

Ken Mejia-Beal, the chairman of the Democratic Party of DuPage County, issued a statement saying the organization immediately severed all ties with Lemanski after it “became aware of her callous and reprehensible posts.”

“She does not speak for us and we unequivocally reject her statements about the tragic events that occurred yesterday in Waukesha,” Mejia-Beal said in the statement. “We as a party denounce violence of any kind. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families impacted by this heinous act, which shocked and saddened us all.”

Mejia-Beal’s statement expanded on a tweet the organization made Monday morning, in which it said it found Lemanski’s statements to be “incredibly insensitive and not in alignment of who we are as an organization.”

According to Fox News, Lemanski on Sunday posted: “I’m sad anytime anyone dies. I just believe in Karma and this came around quick on the citizens of Wisconsin. You reap what you sow. It’s sad people died, but when you open the door to vigilante justice, everyone seems threatening.”

She also wrote, “Living in Wisconsin he (the driver) probably felt threatened.”

“Why do people all of a sudden care about a stupid remark? I can’t believe my 15 minutes of shame is for this (expletive),” she posted Monday morning.

And in replies to comments by other Twitter users, she wrote on Monday, “The blood of Kyle Rittenhouse’s victims is on the hands of Wisconsin citizens, even the children.”

Lemanski’s remarks drew a response from Greg Hart, a Republican county board member running for county board chairman.

“On a day when parents and children were murdered and severely injured, I am utterly disgusted that a leader of the DuPage Democratic Party -- Mary Lemanski -- would have so little compassion and decency to make light of the tragedy and to say ‘Wisconsin citizens, even the children’ in some way deserved what happened to them. Shame on her,” Hart said in a statement. “What kind of values are we demonstrating for our children? Sickening.”

Lemanski ran for Downers Grove Township clerk in April but lost. She is a precinct committeeman with a term ending in 2022.

She could not be reached for comment. By Monday afternoon, all her tweets were removed from her page.