Obama launches stinging attack on Trump

Obama launches stinging attack on Trump

Appearing in Southern California on Saturday, the former president took another swipe at his successor as he raised his profile campaigning for fellow Democrats to regain control of the House.

Obama told an audience of more than a thousand students at the University of IL his successor is "just capitalizing on resentments that politicians have been fanning for years".

"Out of this political darkness I am seeing a great awakening of citizenship all across the country", Obama said.

"Appealing to tribe, appealing to fear, pitting one group against another, telling people that order and security will be restored if it weren't for those who don't look like us or don't sound like us or don't pray like we do - that's an old playbook", he said.

Obama made a case against voter apathy by unloading on the current state of the Republican Party, saying among other things that they are abdicating their responsibilities by doing nothing "when the president does something insane".

"When you hear how great the economy's doing right now, let's just remember when this recovery started", he said, recalling that he had inherited a unsafe economic downturn and left office amid a recovery.

"It shouldn't be Democratic or Republican to say that we don't threaten the freedom of the press because they say things or publish stories we don't like", Obama said during a speech at the University of IL, where he received an ethics in government award.

But Obama pointed to his own role in bringing the US out of one of the worst economic recessions it has experienced, saying "let's just remember when this recovery started".

Obama, reacting to the op-ed account, said "that's not how our democracy is supposed to work".

"Just a glance at recent headlines should tell you this moment really is different, the stakes really are higher, the consequences of any of us sitting on the sidelines are more dire", he said.

"I'm sorry, I watched it but I fell asleep", Trump said.

He later added: "This is not normal".

"I found he's very good for sleeping", Trump added.

Trump this week criticized the attorney general for prosecuting two Republican congressmen, saying it will hurt the party in the November elections. "There is actually only one check on bad policy and abuses of power, and that's you and your vote". In 2009, the Obama White House claimed that Fox was "not a news organization" and instead "a wing of the Republican Party". "How hard can that be, saying that Nazis are bad?"

The speech comes ahead of his first midterm campaign events, beginning Saturday, in the political battleground of Orange County, Calif., where he will stump for several Democratic House candidates.

His comments came during a speech at the University of IL at Urbana-Champaign, where he accepted an ethics in government award.

Obama is expected to deliver a similar message in Cleveland on Thursday, when he campaigns on behalf of Richard Cordray, the Democratic nominee for OH governor, and other Democrats.

Obama will head to Cleveland on September 13 to campaign for Ohio Democratic gubernatorial nominee Richard Cordray.

Obama's campaign activity will continue through October and will include fundraising appearances, according to an Obama adviser. "Doubling down on that strategy won't work in 2018 either".

In a wide-ranging speech punctuated by frequent applause, Obama criticized the divisive politics of the era, decrying Trump's attacks on the media and the judiciary, his eagerness to work with Russian Federation while neglecting traditional alliances.

Analysts say Obama's star status among Democrats will help drive turnout among African-American, Latino and young voters in key suburban House districts and cities.

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