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. Obama Victim

    Obama didn't have the FACTS – but felt it important to defend his BLACK friend against a WHITE cop.

    Sounds like Obama heard more Rev Wright sermons than he led us to believe!

    Obama is a disgrace.

    PS – the actual police report (and witness statements) is linked to drudge report.

    July 23, 2009 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  2. Shauna

    There was no excuse for the policeman's behavior. If a person is telling you over and over again that they are in their home, check the facts. But because he was black in a white neighborhood (non comfirmed), he was immediately public enemy #1. Its sad that race is still a factor in everyday life. Its 2009, not 1950. Lets all just grow up, because when we get to Heaven, it will not be based on your color. God loves us all. Remember that when you look at someone's color and past judgement.

    July 23, 2009 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  3. gabe

    It was his friend and he has a right to voice his opinion. I'm a minority and have seen how officers have mistreated people. I'm glad some are decent, but there are always bad apples. If the man gave the cop his ID and address, who cares if he's being rude, that's not a reason to arrest someone.

    July 23, 2009 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  4. Doug Neumann

    I'm waiting for the cop involved this to become a scapegoat. Just like I said Michael Jackson's doctor would become one, too.

    July 23, 2009 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  5. Reggie

    Huge mistake by Obama. Reverse racism...

    July 23, 2009 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  6. Sniffit

    Saw this statement in one of the commentary sections: "Gates refused to show id and played the race card."

    Just boggles the mind, doesn't it? Or does it? That people would have an absolute 100% incorrect set of facts to work with? Gee, I wonder where it came from. Pay attention, because these hypercriticial neocon loons think these forums and others are a great place to disseminate misinformation.

    July 23, 2009 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  7. GrrlCanada

    The only thing I find confusing right now is who called police in the first place. If it was a neighbour, doesn't that say a lot about the loss of neighbourliness amongst people living beside or near each other? Isn't THAT what is sad here? They live beside each other and don't even recognize their neighbour or his vehicle? That would NEVER have happened in MY neighbourhood.

    July 23, 2009 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  8. JW

    Seriously? After all the stupid things that George W said while he was in office (and we all know that there were many!), they are actually attacking President Obama for this? He maybe should not have said what he did, but to make this a political issue is just stupid. Grow up GOP!!!

    July 23, 2009 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  9. larry

    Hell the cop did act stupidly...sometimes the truth is hard to take...thanks CNN for trying to create a controversy

    July 23, 2009 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  10. obama a liar

    Obama is a thug from Chicago and a born liar Hussien is his middle name and lying is his game

    July 23, 2009 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  11. VGal

    I agree that Obama's comment was poor. However, why is it that the only thing the republicans can accomplish is COMPLAIN. Like I said in an earlier post, Republicans are the "Complain, Do-Nothing and Make Sure No One Else does Anything" congress.

    I'm so glad to see them spend all of their hard-earned cash on THIS instead of coming up with good alternatives to the current agenda.

    Worthless.

    July 23, 2009 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  12. chris22044@yahoo.com

    Obama "acted stupid" with his comment. I am so sick of minorities playing the victim. Policemen, teachers, government workers can't simply do their jobs anymore because the race card keeps coming up. Even under good intentions, people are not doing their best job anymore because they are so worried that race is interjected somehow. I am sorry I donated to Obama's campaign and voted for him. What a turd!

    July 23, 2009 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  13. Anonymous

    Rick Sanchez just "reported" on CNN that the officer LEFT the house and was in the yard and Gates followed him out. BUT, THEN...WHEN READING FROM THE OFFICIAL REPORT Sanchez read the official report where the officer asked Gates to come outside. Huuuummmmm sounds like a totally different situation. This is an example of what is wrong with the media in America, not that it is tooooooooo left, but they are working for ratings and NOT the truth.

    July 23, 2009 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  14. David from WI

    How dare those police arrest a disorderly man under the charge of disorderly conduct.

    Wait is was a well respected man of letters. A pillar of the community?

    HOW DARE THOSE POLICE arrest HIM.
    They forget themselves. Those common,rabble, peasants.

    Those police forget what their station in life is.

    July 23, 2009 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  15. Jim from Seattle

    The GOP is simply trying to rally more biggots to their big tent and this incident has the basic ingredients for their campaign. Moving from 'Joe the Plumber', their new poster child for ignorance is now the 'Cambridge Cop'.

    The Commander in Chief should be aloud to point out this lone incident of stupid behavior without facing a backlash from the biggots.

    July 23, 2009 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  16. Bill NY

    No matter what Obama does there are those who will make up lamebrain excuses to attack him. There are those who will never get over the fact that he won, and won BIG! Its just been six months and already they question why he has not cleaned up the toilet bowl the Bush madministration has made of this great country. At least we have a president that is trying to do something for all the people in this country, and not just some good ole boy's club. Mark my words, the republicans will be the death of us all.

    July 23, 2009 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  17. Julyienn

    The same people that are so upset about President Obama's comment are the same ones who call him worse. This is the same party that made those terrible remarks against his wife.
    This just proves that what's good for one group isn't for the other.

    July 23, 2009 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  18. al in memphis

    Sad day in American politic,not because someone is criticizing Obama, but because we are reminded that political partys can do very little beyond criticizing each other. Even sadder that they think we are too stupid to know who is working and who is not.

    July 23, 2009 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  19. etl

    Oh good GOD, now the president can't have an opinion? This is really getting petty. Let's focus on the real issues please!

    July 23, 2009 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  20. AJ

    It was a stupid racist remark out of the President. He admitted to not knowing all of the facts yet felt compelled to inject himself into the conversation. Do you honestly beleive he would have done the same had it been a hispanic or gay man? Doubtful.

    July 23, 2009 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  21. JayF

    This is just another case of playing politics. President Obama was clear when he said he didn't know the entire situation, but was informed that the arrest occurred after Gates proved he owned the house, which is what was reported. A questionable statement would be calling the police officer an "evil-doer", a term former presidents have made. Additionally, this statement from the NRCC couldn't resist applying their disagreement about foreign leaders or solving the economic crisis to this unconnected issue. Regardless of what Obama says or does, the NRCC will be sure to waste time and money on these types of ridiculous ads.

    July 23, 2009 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  22. Steve J, Michigan

    No one except those at the scene know exactly what happened. Obama made a mistake no harm no foul... I do agree that once the police established that Gates did in deed live there it was stupid to arrest him regardless how mouthy he became.. I think a smarter policeperson could of just defused the situation... I'd be willing to bet that the policeman copped an attitude just like Gates did..

    Steve-Michigan

    July 23, 2009 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  23. observer

    Old "whitey" is always wrong when it comes to blacks on any issue!

    July 23, 2009 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  24. Luke Brown

    Obama hasn't learned that he needs to show restraint in opening his mouth about these things. He clearly doesn't know all the facts, and just enraged people when he claimed hat he did.

    Unfortunately, he managed to step on his own message last night. The thing everyone is talking about today is how wrong he was to say anything. No one heard anything he said about health care.

    July 23, 2009 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  25. maddox

    Obama has never waited to hear all of the facts before making a decision or a statement about anything. Why should this time be any different?

    July 23, 2009 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
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