A page called ‘I’m With Her’ states ‘I’m with Kaine’ and includes pictures of both candidates. Rittenhouse also posted a picture of herself with Kaine along with some others.
The Free Speech for People Foundation, a group that aims to boost free speech on campus, condemned the postings.
“These private activities of a student with which we are unaware should be subject to legal regulation. The Dakota Access pipeline debacle remains a pointed example of how such private actions to promote a cause can have grave consequences for people not involved in the organizing,” senior communications strategist Peter Sigalow said in a statement emailed to the Guardian.
The group spoke out after Rittenhouse’s statement described the posting as “political rhetoric” and that it does not give off a hostile message.
“We are sure that no harm will come to students from the actions of the student student on this matter,” Rittenhouse said in the statement to the Guardian.
On Sunday, during a “press conference” at the school, the Rittenhouse press secretary, Katie Brown, also called the postings on social media “political speech”, appearing to endorse the actions of her colleague.
In her statement Rittenhouse emphasized that the charges against her were “not about students or others seeking to support Rittenhouse’s ideological views” but rather “an affront to decency”.
In July, three black fraternity brothers on the university’s campus were arrested for “blackmailing” the school with an assault threat, but Rittenhouse denied that the posting of the provocative picture on the Rittenhouse page was meant to be a political act.
On the forum, some students were outraged at the decision.
“It doesn’t seem right to display such blatant racism on here,” said another forum member.
Others stressed the importance of “freedom of speech”.
“The thoughts and feelings expressed here are truly inspiring, important, and safe,” said another poster.