President Barack Obama: Donald Trump has ‘shown no interest in putting in the work’

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Many have argued that Barack Obama was too “hands off” during the Trump presidency, that he was playing by old-school rules of “former presidents never talk sh-t about the current one,” which is particularly outdated in the face of Nazi fascism. I understood why Obama was relatively quiet, just as I understood the criticism against him for remaining so, but I also think it’s just his nature. He’s not a fiery, argumentative person – he’s a thoughtful, intellectual, professorial man who weighs his options carefully and he wanted no part in the daily tit-for-tat tweets with which Trump attempted to bait him. Still, I’ve hoped that in an election year, with his former VP running, Obama would get more heavily involved. He really hasn’t? He’s spoken out more frequently, but again, he’s mostly avoided going head-to-head with Trump.

I’m not going to say that all changed last night with Obama’s third-night speech at the DNC. He’s still the thoughtful wonk, that’s his nature. But he did call out Trump, he just did it in a way that was authentic to his nature. This was Obama the constitutional law professor, making the case that Trump was never going to be a “custodian of this democracy.”

First of all, I’m almost in tears because I f–king miss having a smart president who sometimes bores me with how wonky he is. As for the speech…if anything, Barack Obama seemed to echo his wife’s speech, painting Trump as a man who was simply incapable of being a leader:

“I never expected that my successor would embrace my vision or continue my policies. I did hope, for the sake of our country, that Donald Trump might show some interest in taking the job seriously; that he might come to feel the weight of the office and discover some reverence for the democracy that had been placed in his care. But he never did. For close to four years now, he’s shown no interest in putting in the work; no interest in finding common ground; no interest in using the awesome power of his office to help anyone but himself and his friends; no interest in treating the presidency as anything but one more reality show that he can use to get the attention he craves. Donald Trump hasn’t grown into the job because he can’t.”

[Via CNN]

As Obama spoke, Donald Trump was sitting in bed alone, surrounded by cheeseburger wrappers, rage-tweeting in all-caps.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 20, 2020

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 20, 2020

Do I need to say it? Obama didn’t “spy” on Trump’s campaign. People in the Obama administration noticed that people in Trump’s incoming administration were working as spies for foreign governments. And Obama actually endorsed Biden really quickly when Biden became the “sure thing” nominee.

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