Obama attempts to use beer diplomacy in Harvard arrest case

US President Barack Obama has invited Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. and the Cambridge Police Department officer who arrested Gates, Sgt. James Crowley, over to the White House for beer in an attempt to diffuse criticism of his comments over the case.

Obama told reporters at a White House press conference earlier this week the he believed Cambridge Police had acted stupidly, a call heavily condemned by police throughout the United States.

Worse for Obama, the comments have overshadowed his push for health care reform.

Both Gates and Crowley have reportedly accepted the president’s invitation to down a few beers at the White House. There is no firm date or time set – yet, but it will be in the “near future,” the White House has said.

There’s no word yet whether Obama’s new beer diplomacy policy will be extended to other areas of interest for the President, like Middle East peace or the war on terror.

(in part with AHN.)