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Superintendent responds after former Teacher of the Year apologizes for 'bad joke' about Mitch McConnell

Robinson: 'I do not advocate for violence against Mitch McConnell.'
Posted at 12:02 PM, Dec 31, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-31 12:47:46-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- A Richmond educator who was named the best teacher in America last year has apologized for a social media posting that seemed to encourage violence against Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

“Who are Mitch McConnell’s neighbors?” Rodney Robinson tweeted Wednesday. “I’m just saying Rand Paul’s neighbor did what a true Kentucky hero should do. It’s your turn to step up.”

Senator Rand Paul was assaulted by one of his neighbors in 2017. He suffered six broken ribs and had to have part of his lung removed.

Paul’s wife later responded saying she was disgusted by the tweet and flagged it to Jack Dorsey, the head of Twitter.

Robinson has since deleted the tweet, and he has posted an apology on his Medium website Thursday morning.

“I recently made a bad joke on Twitter about Rand Paul’s fight with his neighbors in relation to Mitch McConnell’s neighbors and I was wrong for that,” the statement reads, in part. “No one should be assaulted. Due to my ignorance of the situation, I didn’t know Rand Paul was seriously injured in the altercation. I apologize for making light of his injuries. I do not advocate for violence against Mitch McConnell.”

Robinson was named the National Teacher of the Year in 2019. At the time, he taught history to students inside the Richmond Juvenile Detention Center.

Earlier this year, he was named senior adviser for Richmond Public Schools. He is also a member of Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney’s Education Compact Team and the Task Force to Reimagine Public Safety.

WTVR CBS 6 reached out to Richmond Public Schools (RPS) for a statement. Officials pointed to a tweet from RPS Superintendent Jason Kamras posted Thursday morning.

“RPS doesn’t condone violence of any kind. Period,” Kamras’ tweet reads. “Thank you to Rodney Robinson for this heartfelt apology. Words matter – across the political spectrum.”