The White House refused to answer questions regarding President Barack Obama’s stance on the George Zimmerman trial on Thursday in an unexpected move to distance itself from Obama’s previous comments.
“[Obama’s] comments are what they were, but we’re not going to say anything from here,” press secretary Jay Carney said.
When asked by reporters if the Justice Department will be watching the outcome and reporting back to the President, Carney said, “I do not know the answer to that question.”
Last March during a press conference in the Rose Garden, Obama responded emotionally to questions regarding Martin’s death.
“I’m head of the executive branch and the Attorney General reports to me, and I’ve got to be careful about my statements to make sure we not impair any investigation that’s taking place right now,” Obama said, prefacing his remarks. (RELATED: Docs: Justice Department facilitated anti-Zimmerman protests)
“If I had a son, he would look like Trayvon,” Obama continued. “I think [Martin’s parents] are right to expect that all of us as Americans are going to take this with the seriousness it deserves and were going to get to the bottom of exactly what happened.”
Obama also called the incident a “tragedy,” adding, “I think all of us have to do some soul searching to think about how something like this happens.”
The trial’s closing arguments will be given Thursday afternoon.