Published: Wed, September 12, 2018
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

Obama stumps for Democrats in California

Obama stumps for Democrats in California

Obama warned that the country is at "one of those pivotal moments when everyone of us as citizens of the United States needs to determine just who it is that we are".

President Trump pretended to be unmoved, saying, "I watched it but I fell asleep".

Obama told voters the dismay they feel about Washington right now is meaningless if they don't go to the polls.

"You happen to be coming of age during one of those moments", Obama said.

The former President launched a blistering attack on his successor.


"It should not be a partisan issue to say that we do not pressure the attorney general or the Federal Bureau of Investigation to use the criminal justice system as a cudgel to punish our political opponents", Obama said.

The Democrat hit out at the Republican party's record on the environment, the White House's "cosying up" Russian President Vladimir Putin, the Trump administration's targeting of minorities, and Trump's own threats against the media.

Meanwhile in a nod to the turbulence of the past week which saw allegations of a secret "resistance" working inside the White House the 57 year old Obama poured scorn on the idea that "everything will turn out okay" because some of Trump's staff are secretly ignoring the boss's orders.

"That is not a check", Obama said.

He specifically called out Mr Trump's response to the violence in Charlotesville, Virginia in 2017, asking the crowd: "How hard can that be, saying that Nazis are bad?" "The politics of division and resentment and paranoia has unfortunately found a home in the Republican Party". "And they are risky times".

"Donald Trump is one of the biggest threats to our democracy?" "Then something powerful happens", he said. "It reminds the Republicans why these midterms are important".

Says Pence: "The truth is, the American people in 2016 rejected the policy and direction of Barack Obama when they elected President Donald Trump".

Former US president Barack Obama on Saturday urged voters to mobilize and return control of Congress to Democrats as he denounced what he said was the "politics of fear" dividing the country.

"It shouldn't be Democratic or Republican to say we don't target certain groups of people based on what they look like or how they pray", he said.

Obama stepped back into the political fray Friday, delivering a speech at the University of IL at Urbana-Champaign.

Obama also criticized recent Republican policy moves such as the $1.5 trillion in tax cuts that ballooned the nation's budget deficit, but which party leaders hoped would be a winning issue during midterm campaigns. Obama will receive a medal for the Paul H. Douglas Award for Ethics in Government at a private ceremony following the speech.

The remarks served as Mr Obama's first steps into the political fray ahead of the midterm elections autumn campaign. While he has endorsed several candidates and appeared at fundraising events, he has spent much of his post-presidency on the political sidelines.

And five of the seven seats Democrats are going after are in Orange and San Diego Counties. Next week he'll be in OH to campaign for Richard Cordray and other Democrats.

Obama left office with a 57 percent approval rating, and like most presidents, his standing has only improved since departing the West Wing. Obama is set to speak Friday as he accepts an ethics in government award in IL.

The former president said Trump is "a symptom, not the cause" of the divisiveness plaguing U.S. politics. Obama was "a lot lower key than yesterday's speech". Next week he'll be in OH to campaign for Senator Richard Cordray and other Democrats.

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