Obama "Recalibrates" On the Gates/Crowley Issue

Following up on yesterday’s story, President Obama has reconsidered his ill-fated initial foray into the controversy surrounding the arrest of Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr.


Video via TPM LiveWire

From The Caucus Blog at New York Times story on President Obama’s appearance:

The brief and surprise appearance by Mr. Obama before reporters on Friday afternoon was an attempt by the White House to move beyond the controversy that has dominated the last two days of news coverage. Only hours earlier, Robert Gibbs, the press secretary, said the president had made his final remarks about the issue. But advisers said the mounting criticism from police groups and others persuaded the president to address the matter in an attempt to move on.

The five-minute call between Mr. Obama and Mr. Crowley took place Friday afternoon. Aides said the president had not yet spoken to Professor Gates.

Mr. Obama did not use the word “apology,” but aides said that was the sentiment conveyed during his phone call with Sergeant Crowley.

The controversy, Mr. Obama acknowledged, overshadowed his attempt to explain the effort to overhaul the nation’s health care system. By speaking about the matter again on Friday, the president hoped to turn the page.

It now appears that even President Obama is pretty sure the Gates was anything but civil to the police officer as he initially claimed.

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