Bill Clinton on His Criminal Justice Legacy Following Dispute with Black Lives Matter Activists: ‘I Almost Want to Apologize for It’

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“We’ve got to stop that in this country,” he said. “We’ve got to listen to each other.” 

In an attempt to smooth over the controversy surrounding his heated exchange with Black Lives Matter activists in Philadelphia, the Huffington Post reports that former president Bill Clinton offered this statement to attendees at a campaign rally for Hillary Clinton on Friday in Erie, Pennsylvania.

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“So I did something yesterday in Philadelphia. I almost want to apologize for it, but I want to use it as an example of the danger threatening our country,” he said.

“It is true [the bill] had longer sentence provisions,” the former president continued. “It is true that they led to some people going to jail for too long in ways that cannot be justified. And I went to the NAACP convention last year and said that and said it was way past time to change.”

 Clinton said that in his attempt to “vigorously defend” his wife on Thursday, both he and the protester ended up “talking past” one another.

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“We’ve got to stop that in this country,” he said. “We’ve got to listen to each other.” 

However, the former president still attributes the bill to the political climate of the early 1990s.

“You’re living in a country where young African-Americans think their number one threat now is from police officers,” he said. “When I signed that crime bill, they knew what their number one threat was. It was from gangs, making money out of cocaine, taking teenage kids, hopping them up, giving them guns and telling them to go kill other teenagers to prove their bones. It’s different.”

Is he digging himself a bigger hole?

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