Former Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich on Sunday suggested that President Barack Obama had fueled racial tension in the country, and that New York City Mayors Rudy Giuliani and Michael Bloomberg had "saved" more African-American lives than anyone by ordering the police department to profile black citizens.
In a Sunday interview with CBS host Bob Schieffer, Gingrich agreed that criminal justice reform was needed in the United States, and that some people were in prison "who didn't need to be."
But he also said that there "has to be some recognition -- and this will probably get me in trouble -- young people should be told, when a policeman tells you to stop, stop."
"You have the first African-American president, you have an African-American attorney general six years into their effort," he opined. "We are in some ways further apart, not closer together. That's a tragic failure of leadership at the very top."
"Are you somehow saying this is the fault of Barack Obama?" Schieffer wondered.
"I'm saying the president uses a lot of his time using language which is divisive, automatically jumps to conclusions about things he doesn't know," Gingrich replied. "I'm saying the attorney general has clearly given speeches which are divisive."
"And I'm just suggesting to you, this is just a tragic lost opportunity, that you would think that six years into the first African-American president [SIC], there would be a sense in the community of us coming closer together. That hasn't happened."
"Let me just remind you, the two people who have done the most to save African-American lives in New York City were Rudy Giuliani and Mike Bloomberg, their [stop and frisk] policing techniques, led by Chief Bratton who invented them, actually have saved thousands of lives by focusing on crime in a very intelligent way."
In conclusion, Gingrich recommended the same stop and frisk policies policy for Chicago, President Barack Obama's hometown.
Last year, a judge ordered New York City to reform its stop and frisk policy after ruling that it was "indirect racial profiling."