White House National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien denied that systemic racism is a problem in law enforcement agencies across the country during an interview on CNN Sunday morning.
After CNN’s Jake Tapper pointed out that George Floyd is hardly the only unarmed black man killed by police and asked whether he thinks systemic racism is a problem in police forces, O’Brien denied that’s the case.
“No, I don’t think there’s systemic racism,” O’Brien said. “I think 99.9% of our law enforcement officers are great Americans and many of them are African-American, Hispanic, Asian. They’re working in the toughest neighborhoods, they got the hardest jobs to do in this country.”
O’Brien went on to praise law enforcement for being “amazing, great Americans” before arguing that “there are some bad apples in there.”
“There are some bad cops that are racist, there are cops that maybe don’t have the right training,” O’Brien said. “There are some that are just bad cops and they need to be rooted out because there’s a few bad apples that are giving law enforcement a terrible name.”
O’Brien then added that “there’s no doubt there’s some racist police” before reiterating that he thinks “they’re the minority.”
“I think they’re the few bad apples and we need to root them out,” O’Brien said, before touting that he’s “proud” law enforcement professionals are handling nationwide unrests over the mistreatment of African Americans “with restraint.”
“We do have to get rid of those that are like the dirty cop that killed George Floyd, we need to get rid of those people,” O’Brien said.
Watch O’Brien’s remarks below:
White House national security adviser Robert O’Brien denies that there's systemic racism pic.twitter.com/BB81x9eznn
— Talking Points Memo (@TPM) May 31, 2020