The most scrutinized raising of beer mugs in recent history could happen this week.
White House spokesman Robert Gibbs told reporters this morning that plans are in the works for Cambridge police Sergeant James Crowley and Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. to join President Obama for that drink this week.
UPDATE: Charles Ogletree, one of Gates's lawyers, tells the Globe that the meeting will be on Thursday and that both Crowley and Gates can bring family members. The White House would not immediately confirm those details.
Asked what Obama hoped to accomplish in the get-together, Gibbs replied that "a big part of this is an increased dialogue between both of the individuals here and -- and their representation of both law enforcement and the minority community.
"I don't have any specific guidance as to when that will happen. It's our hope to try to get something done this week," Gibbs added.
As for choice of libation, Crowley is partial to Blue Moon, Gates favors Red Stripe or Becks, and Gibbs suggested that Obama will quaff a plain old Budweiser.
"The president had a Budweiser at the All-Star Game, so -- why are you looking at me like that? That's what he drank," Gibbs said, teasing reporters.
"What's wrong with Budweiser? Why do you hate Budweiser?"
Crowley and Gates accepted Obama's invitation last Friday as Obama tried to quell the furor over his initial remarks that Cambridge police "acted stupidly" in arresting Gates in his own home.
Obama said that he should have calibrated his remarks and meant no disrespect to Crowley or Cambridge police.
The disorderly conduct charges against Gates were dropped, but he and Crowley still disagree over what happened.
UPDATE: Obama, in his mea culpa on Friday, all but apologized for his initial statement, saying he regretted that it fueled the controversy.
But that isn't enough for one Republican congressman.
Representative Thaddeus McCotter of Michigan says he will introduce a resolution (read it here) calling on Obama to formally apologize to the Cambridge police.
"Whereas, President Obama’s refusal to retract his initial public remarks and apologize to Sergeant Crowley and, instead, reiterate his accusation impugning Sergeant Crowley’s professional conduct in the performance of his duties," the draft resolution reads in part.
"Now therefore be it resolved that the House of Representatives calls upon President Obama to retract his initial public remarks and apologize to Cambridge, Massachusetts Police Sergeant James M. Crowley for having unfairly impugned and prejudged his professional conduct in this local police response incident."
About Political Intelligence
Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.