July 24th, 2009
06:05 PM ET
9 years ago

Holder remains silent on Cambridge incident

Attorney General Eric Holder will not comment on the Cambridge, Massachusetts incident.

Attorney General Eric Holder will not comment on the Cambridge, Massachusetts incident.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Attorney General Eric Holder who made headlines when he referred to the American people as "essentially a nation of cowards" in failing to openly discuss racial issues is staying mum on the Cambridge, Massachusetts, police incident.

Holder's chief spokesman said Holder would defer to the White House for comment on the controversial issue.

"Given that the president just spoke on this, I don't think we have anything to add," said Justice Department Director of Public Affairs Matthew Miller, a senior aide to Holder.

President Obama waded into the issue again Friday, informing the White House press corps he had spoken with Cambridge Police Sergeant James Crowley and said he had not meant to criticize either Crowley or the city's police department. The president later also called Professor Henry Louis Gates.

Holder issued his blunt assessment of race relations in a major speech at the Justice Department on February 19, where he addressed an overflow crowd celebrating Black History Month.

"Though this nation has proudly thought of itself as an ethnic melting pot, in things racial we have always been and continue to be in too many ways essentially a nation of cowards," he said then.

Filed under: Eric Holder
soundoff (45 Responses)
  1. Steve, Columbia SC

    Mr Holder should remain silent. We have already had one stupid remark from a TOP White House official. The officer did not respond in any way with a racist attitude. He did his job, which in today's culture, is dangerous.

    If our president will make this type of improperly "calibrated" statement regarding very local law enforcement, what kind of foolish, inappropriate remark might he make on an international or national level?

    July 24, 2009 06:39 pm at 6:39 pm |
  2. makesUwonder

    Oh please Mr. Holder do speak up and don't be a "coward".

    July 24, 2009 06:40 pm at 6:40 pm |
  3. JonDie

    Holder is acting professionally. As a law enforcement official who could become involved in a legal case, Holder is showing his impartiality in upholding the law. Too bad many white police officers can't behave in a similarly professional manner.

    July 24, 2009 06:40 pm at 6:40 pm |
  4. Lilarose in Bandon, Oregon

    You don't have to let anyone into your home without a warrant.

    A "cop" that you let into your house might not be a real cop. Lots of people get killed by killers pretending to be cops.

    Always beware of cops, ask THEM for their ID and the Cambridge cop refused to do so when Prof Gates asked him.

    July 24, 2009 06:41 pm at 6:41 pm |
  5. Zero.

    So CNN want someone to Lick-You. I just your respect. Not a one-sided-bias. I dont have to like you. Ihave to respect your jugement.
    You took out a licence many years ago for free broadcasting.
    So do your Job. Or appy again, and not under an Obama Regime..

    July 24, 2009 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  6. Easy

    one foot in mouth, enough,huh

    July 24, 2009 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  7. A-Georgia

    He should not weigh-in on the arrest of one citizen, famous as he may be in some circles. This is not a matter for the U. S. Attorney General.

    July 24, 2009 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  8. Grrr-awful-o

    Holder has better judgement than the "good judgement" president evidently. Talk about "Doh!"

    July 24, 2009 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  9. Reformed Republican

    Holder said we are..."essentially a nation of cowards." With your lack of legal and moral courage on the torture and wire tap issues you must have been looking into the mirror.
    Prove us wrong Mr. Holder – Show us that you value the law over your boss's political timing agenda...

    July 24, 2009 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  10. tonyt

    so what

    July 24, 2009 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  11. Change in America

    I hope Holder would make a law that police must give badges and name to anyone that requested to have without penalty for just asking for it. NO more Profilen in the African American neighborhood.
    No more Road Blocks in the African American Neighborhood.

    Police always in my neighborhood profilen African American with traffic road blocks in Atlanta Georgia this needs to stop.

    July 24, 2009 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  12. Scott L

    Of course not. They want it to go away.

    The best part of this whole thing is that Obama is saying our own American Police Officers act stupidly, yet he wants to sit down with terrorist organizations to work things out.


    July 24, 2009 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  13. mike

    He already had his racist moment a few months back. He figured it was uhbamas turn again.

    July 24, 2009 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  14. Mike Hawke

    Well whats he supposed to say.

    July 24, 2009 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  15. Thomas5

    No, Mr. Holder, we have been saying plenty. You just don't like hearing what we say.

    Instead of listening to what the other side is actually saying, you'd rather kowtow to the "Whitey is oppressing me!" crowd.

    July 24, 2009 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  16. Zero.

    No! no No No dreamer it is only you on CNN who keep praising this idiot Obama. What was your name agaiN????

    July 24, 2009 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  17. David from WI

    The president undermines the authority of LAW AND ORDER and the LAW ENFORCEMENT OF THIS COUNTRY.

    And you stand silent?

    What use are YOU?



    You and our president undermine law and order.


    July 24, 2009 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  18. Shirley In California

    I must give AG Holder credit. At least he says what he means.

    This is going to be President Obama's downfall. He needs to stop back pedalling and be firm. Like W or not – he stuck to his guns. I'm not impressed by Obama's apology. If you are not prepared to back up something-don't say anything in the first place. This happened during the entire campaign – I apologize, I apologize. Being president is a tough job and you have to be a tough person to endure it. Pretty soon he won't be respected and taken seriously if he keeps this behavior up. World leaders including, tyrant's are watching. Please Mr. President be a Joshua and lead!

    July 24, 2009 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  19. Zero.

    I knew there was some: Snidy character on CNN.
    So his name is Bil? But what bill does he support , besides himself?

    July 24, 2009 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  20. Ray ray

    What?? Holder NOT supporting the Cambridge Police??

    Sounds like Holder is a COWARD!

    July 24, 2009 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  21. nom deplume, esq.

    Everyone who thinks that the Cambridge Police were racist and wrong, be sure to let the world know. Put a new obama sticker on the car. Big one. Wave it proudly.

    And everyone who thinks that Gates was out of line, and that it was Obama that acted stupidly, be sure to put a sticker on your car that says "I support the Cambridge PD" or "Gates should apologize"

    And if you are on the fence, and voted for Obama but don't think the cops were wrong, I suggest getting that Obama sticker off the car now.

    July 24, 2009 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  22. Obama is a Mistake

    He's smarter than his boss.

    July 24, 2009 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  23. Alexa

    Good for him!

    July 24, 2009 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  24. Don

    He already said his nonsense statement on the subject before, no need to add more, or he is being a coward not dealing with this racial issue?
    And CNN, OMG, why are you dealing with Palin nonsense where the USA has all kind of issues mishandled!??

    July 24, 2009 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  25. Hannibel

    Oh,the enjoyment of tinkering with the emotions of bloggers. ta ta for now

    July 24, 2009 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
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