Can’t help but laugh at this one. Do you think anyone will look back and say Obama was right?
Americans are likely look back on the 2016 election a decade from now and realize that Donald Trump’s way of thinking was wrongheaded, says President Barack Obama.
Trump is tapping into the ‘frustrations and the fear’ of an ‘earlier generation that feels unsettled,’ Obama told NPR.
The president said it’s his belief, however, ‘if we get the decisions that need to be made right, then 10 years from now, 20 years from now, we may look back at something like the Trump campaign as the last vestige of — a kind of politics of us versus them that really doesn’t apply to — to today.’
Democrats must not get ‘complacent’ or ‘smug,’ though, he warned, and should take seriously the complaints of Trump and his supporters.
‘I said on election night back in Grant Park, I’m president of everybody,’ Obama recalled to NPR. ‘I’ve got a particular point of view…I don’t make any apologies for it.’
Obama said he believes he’s kept that promise.
‘And the core of that message is “e pluribus unum,” out of many, one, that — that we are better when we are together, that I do not believe in tribalism. I do not believe in stoking divisions and scapegoating.’
Trump is the antithesis to the Obama presidency, hallmarked by its bear hug of tolerance and diversity.
But Obama said he does not believe that his policies are directly responsible for the popularity of Trump.
‘You will hear sometimes people suggest that, well, if Democrats and Republicans had been paying attention to white, working-class voters, then something like Trump would not have happened,’ the president observed.That’s an unfair assessment, Obama said – when his administration pushes ‘higher minimum wage or stronger union laws or health care, for that matter, that’s helping that cohort. That is designed to make sure that they get a better deal in this economy.’
It’s a ‘certain slice of the media’ that’s telling ‘white, working-class voters somehow that these things are not good for you, that this is Obama and his socialist friends who are trying to take money from you to give to an undeserving, you know, Mexican immigrant or black welfare mom and — and tapping into — sort of an identity politics that, you know, is powerful and oftentimes can work.’
‘But it is actually counterproductive, and it certainly does not reflect what we have been trying to do,’ he protested.
Republicans who opposed those proposals now have a ‘populist insurgency on their hands,’ he said.
‘And Mr. Trump, I think, has, at times, exploited this — this gap between what, you know, the Republican business community has promoted and — and what their constituencies are actually looking for.’
Obama said in the NPR interview that he continues to believes his political and philosophical opponent will be defeated in November, and will not, therefore, have the opportunity to forever change the trajectory of the nation.
‘I think that will be tested over the next four months,’ he acknowledged. ‘But I think it is pretty hard to argue that somebody who almost three-quarters of the country think is unqualified to be president and has a negative opinion about it is tapping into the zeitgeist of the country, or is speaking for a broad base of the country.’