July 23rd, 2009
03:25 PM ET
5 years ago

NRCC targets Obama for saying Cambridge cop 'acted stupidly'

(CNN) – The National Republican Congressional Committee came to the defense of the Cambridge, Massachusetts police officer who arrested black Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates, Jr., attacking President Obama for saying Wednesday night the officer 'acted stupidly.'

In a statement targeting several House Democrats from Massachusetts, NRCC communications director Ken Spain said, "This is certainly a questionable rush to judgment coming from a president who hasn't exactly been quick to call out unconscionable behavior by a merciless foreign dictator or gotten his facts straight before advocating a trillion-dollar mistake to address our ailing economy."

"Is it really presidential for him to cast harsh judgment of a law enforcement official without all the facts?" said Spain.

The statement calls on Massachusetts Democrats to say whether they agree with the president's assessment. The National Republican Senatorial Committee also launched a Web ad Thursday asking whether it was appropriate for Obama to reach a judgment on the matter after he himself admitted he did not know all the facts.


Filed under: NRCC • President Obama
soundoff (310 Responses)
  1. Doug, New Jersey

    Obama is a liberal, would would you expect?

    Let's get this straight right now. Mr Gates did not start screaming without reason all of the fake made up racism garbage because he was black, he did this because he is a liberal. Expect the white guilt lib to back Gates for sure, they dream of being able to do what Gates just did. This is all about how liberal Americans act and how they create each and every so called problem they encounter. Mr. Gates had a foregone conclusion and the outcome he wanted as soon as he saw this officers face, he did this because he is a liberal professor who is all about hate,racism, lies and divison, not becuase he is a black man. If it were not for liberal Democrats, racism would be a thing of the past in America. Liberals manufacture all real and fake racism in America. Real racists today are stupid people who have been played by the liberals and their media, they have volunteered to be created into the racist liberals need to exist since without divide and conquer, there would be no Democrat party.

    July 23, 2009 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  2. Nev

    I agree with Obama.

    I've seen massive evidence of police racism in Southern California, having been in jail at two points for two minor misdemeanors. (I am white.) The first time, when a sheriff talked in a way that I felt was condescending towards a black inmate, I protested and was grabbed and slammed against a wall roughly and told "This is my house!" by the sheriff. The second time, a female nurse talked to a Latino inmate in a voice that I've not heard as much condescension and contempt in before or since, and I protested and was yanked out of my cell and beaten to the ground by six large sheriffs – the only time I saw any sheriff in that jail with anything other than a miserable frown on his/her face was after beating me up, actually, when the sheriff in charge grinned at me and told me that I had no rights because I was an inmate.

    The police, in general, are mostly above the law, and many of them act accordingly. I absolutely believe that racial profiling may indeed have been a factor in Gates' treatment, and support my President in his remarks.

    July 23, 2009 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  3. Angus McDugan

    Once again… Obama acted before he knew the details. How embarrassing for us all.

    July 23, 2009 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  4. cast harsh judgment of a law enforcement official

    as an Obama support, I can't believe he did this

    he should have stayed out of it

    July 23, 2009 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  5. Shawn - GA

    We have no idea how the guy acted, he may have been yelling and screaming and throwing a fit. Hence the arrest for distrubing the peace.

    For the President of the United States to make such a comment shows a real lack of respect and that he is correct in saying race is a factor in this country. He is a racist, just like the church he sat in for over 20 years.

    July 23, 2009 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  6. California Gold

    People do act stupid. Police and citizens act stupidly. In hind sight many stupid decisions would not be made. Only the GOP would try to parlay this into a political issue.

    July 23, 2009 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  7. Tim

    Well said Mr. Spain.

    July 23, 2009 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  8. Matthew of Cambridge

    This is racism at its worst. And I am speaking of what Professor Gates said and did, and what President Obama said.

    I pray that I am wrong, but when I see our President play the race card so publicly in a matter that he obviously knew nothing about, it sacres the heck out of me. Is our President a racist? Was the appointment of Satomayor calculated to tip the courts towards racial affirmative action? This is very disconcerning.

    Folks should read the police report. Then they should look into the record of this police officer. They will conculde that what happened here is an arrogant well connected black Harvard Professor acted like an idiot and got arrested for it – as should be the case. As for the black female mayor of Cambridge who stood behind Professor gates, take a guess how many phone calls she got from DC and the White House along with a call from Governor Deval who was also called. I really hope that Gates does not let this go as if all the facts come out, the professor may be arrested again for defamation of character.

    July 23, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  9. karuna

    Obama is DEAD WRONG!! He is making the situation worse than it was, and he does not have all the facts. Some are just trying to make it a race issue and the stupid ones are really those who are blaming this on racism. The president should and must know better, and he's not helping anything, especially the race issue by saying what he said. Shame on him.

    July 23, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  10. Moderate Democrat

    Republicans: The only thing they have done since Lincoln was assassinated was whine and cry. They haven't had a true leader and person of integrity since the assassination of Lincoln.

    What a pitiful lot of lazy, worthless do nothing moochers.

    July 23, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  11. BJK

    really? is this all they can find to complain about? yeah, its worth running an ad about and milking it for all its worth..... why not work on actually accomplishing something; maybe that would bring people back to the republican party

    July 23, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  12. white female

    Did you'll know the facts when you were calling him and his Wife all those Black racist name, and the things that were said about his daughter last week was uncalled for. I didn't see anyone calling out to any committee on this act.

    July 23, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  13. Bobby

    Wow that's a surprise.
    Honestly nothing the right states has any relevance and especially so regarding Obama. We know they oppose every single thing he does or does not do. .

    July 23, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  14. Fred the Moderate

    Maybe their elderly parents and friends should be arrested in their own homes after showing several picture ID's to a cop who refused to identify himself by not giving his name and badge number! I guess what they really want is the US to become a police state! President Obama was right and this is just divide-um political garbage from the GOP, again. "No ideas? Obviscate as much as possible and try to make the other guy look bad".

    July 23, 2009 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  15. Jen

    America is the most diverse country in the world and the most racially biased country in the world as well. If this professor was white..I am pretty sure the cops would have not reacted like that. its a shame. But this is america..the most Racially biased country in the world. Nothing unusual.

    July 23, 2009 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  16. iv-mi

    President Obama made a honest statement and that is what is wrong with the residents of the United States, we cannot handle the truth. We would rather sweep 400+ years of abuse and discrimination under the rug other than taking the issue head on and finding a unified solution so that "We the people" can have true and honest equality for all men-not just "certain" men.

    July 23, 2009 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  17. Paul, CA

    Watch out BHO. Your colors are showing!!! The president is the biggest disgrace to the office of president in the history of this nation and it will only get worse. Please hurry 2012.

    July 23, 2009 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  18. Bottom Line

    "While I was led to believe that Gates was lawfully in the residence, I was quite surprised and confused with the behavior he exhibited toward me," Crowley said, according to the report.

    This is the statement by the cop. This means that he felt disrespected. Well in American that means you get out of the persons house who is disrespecting you.

    In Iran you show that the government rules and you believe in big government and the government is in full control so you arrest them in there own house.

    NOW REPUBLICANS WANT TO ACTUALLY DEFEND ARRESTING PEOPLE AT THERE OWN HOUSE AND IN THE SAME DAY SAY HEALTHCARE IS BIG GOVERNMENT???

    If you believe that your just STUPID!

    July 23, 2009 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  19. Economist

    This is just the usual political tactic of reducing the signal to noise ratio to keep the public confused.

    July 23, 2009 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  20. nsiande

    It is time for republican to accept the fact that a black man is their president. They need to let it go and let him change this country. Republican this is not the time for playing around you brought this to this mess and you were not able to bring us out of it so let someone else with the brain-president Obama lead this nation to a better place.

    July 23, 2009 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  21. Rob Johnson

    "Questionable rush to judgment"? I'd love to hear anybody defend the actions of that cop.

    I'm sorry, there isn't any "context" that makes it okay to arrest somebody for breaking into their own home. Period.

    July 23, 2009 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  22. Elaine

    Our President should NOT be using his office to defend his friends.
    What a shocking example of cronyism.
    Does Obama not realize that he is the POTUS?
    Whatever happened at Prof Gates home is not a matter that a President should be miring himself in, and so publicly at that!
    Obama has demeaned the office of President, and set race relations back 100 years.
    Obama has proven, again, that he is not Presidential material.

    July 23, 2009 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  23. Laverne

    Hey if it sounds like a duck and quacks like a duck then it's probably a duck! He said and he meant and I agree with him. The Cambridge policeman was wrong and all of this obviously could have been avoided, but the police wanted it to go further to show his authority and to embarrass the professor. There is nothing new about what happened here and why it happened. And for the neighbor who obviously do not know who lives beside her, should take the time to take notice of who lives beside her.

    July 23, 2009 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  24. Brack

    the president himself is playing race again here.
    before you say african american was stopped by police disproportionately, count how many african america in in prison, is that proportionate to the whole population?

    July 23, 2009 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  25. kishen c.rao

    there is absolutely nothing wrong with president...

    July 23, 2009 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
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