‘Bigger than football’ — Obama weighs in on Rice, domestic violence

Almost as soon TMZ released the video Monday morning showing Ray Rice punch his then-fiancée in an elevator in February, the reaction was swift and wide-reaching.

The Ravens terminated the contract of the 27-year-old running back, and the NFL quickly followed suit by suspending Rice indefinitely.

Players, both former and current, took to social media to voice their thoughts. Dick’s Sporting Goods pulled Rice jerseys from its Baltimore-area stores, and fans quickly filed into stores seeking to return their Rice jerseys.

But late Monday night, the attention reached an entirely different level, as President Barack Obama released a statement through his press secretary:

According to the website Politico, Obama spoke with White House press secretary Josh Earnest earlier Monday about the Rice video and the actions taken by the Ravens and the NFL, a talk which prompted Earnest to release the written statement. The statement followed Earnest’s daily press briefing, during which he was asked about Rice but, according to Politico, "he was caught off guard and unable to offer a definitive statement then from the president."