Reporter to Obama: Will You Be Like Bush And Not Criticize Your Successor?; Obama: I Will If “Necessary”

President Obama is asked if he will be like former President George W. Bush and pledge to stay out of politics and not criticize decisions made by his successor. The outgoing president was also asked if he believes he may be the last Democratic president for a while. Former President Bush said earlier this year he feared he would be the last Republican president.

At a press conference Sunday in Lima the president said he does not believe he will be the last Democratic president, for a while, and made no promise to not speak up if he feels it to be “helpful” and “necessary” for him to comment on President-elect Trump’s proposals.

“Look, I said before, President Bush could not have been more gracious to me when I came in and my intention is to certainly for the next two months, finish my job and after that to take Michelle on vacation, get some rest, spend time with my girls and do some writing, some thinking,” Obama said in Peru.

“I want to be respectful of the office and give the president-elect an opportunity to put forward his platform and his arguments without somebody popping off in every instance,” Obama said.

“As an American citizen who cares deeply about our country, if there are issues that have less to do with the specifics of some legislative proposal but go to core questions about our values and our ideals, and if I think that it is necessary or helpful for me to defend those ideals, I’ll examine it when it comes,” the president said.

“But what I do know is that I have to take Michelle on vacation,” Obama joked.

Obama attributed the loss of the House, the Senate, state legislatures and assemblies under his presidency to people not being able to “see the recovery” and and Republicans taking advantage of redistricting and gerrymandering.

Obama also complained that low population Republican states get two Senators just like a highly-populated state like California.

“I came in as the economy was in flow fall and although I took the right steps to save the economy, in my midterm election of 2010 people couldn’t yet see the recovery and not surprisingly the president’s party got punished,” Obama argued.

“We lost control of a lot of not just Congressional seats but also governorships and state legislative seats and that happened to be the year that the census was done and you start doing redistricting,” he explained. “And so those Republicans took advantage of political gerrymandering to lock in majorities even though in a numerous subsequent elections Democrats have actually cast more votes or more votes have been cast for Democratic Congressional candidates than Republicans and yet you end up having large Republican majorities. So there are just structural problems we have to deal with. But, look, you can’t make excuses about the rules. That’s the deal and we have to do better.”

Transcript:

RICH EDSON, FOX NEWS: Thank you, Mr. President. Earlier this year President George W. Bush reportedly said he warned he would be the last Republican president and now Republicans have won the White House, controlled the House and Senate, two-thirds of state legislatures, 34 governorships and there are charges of a shallow Democratic bench behind you.

Are you worried you could be the last Democrat president for a while? And secondly, sir, speaking of your predecessor he made sure to offer essentially no public criticism of you during your time in office. Will you equally withhold public criticism for President Trump even if he attempts to dismantle much of what you have accomplished? Thank you.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, no, I am not worried about being the last Democratic president. I think — not even for a while. And I say that not being cute, the Democratic nominee won the popular vote and obviously this is an extremely competitive race and I would expect that future races will be competitive.

I certainly think it’s true that politics in America right now are a little bit up for grabs. That some of the old alignments in both parties, Democrat and Republican, are being reshaped. And although the results of this election involved some of the specifics of the candidates and aren’t going to be duplicated in every subsequent election, Democrats do have to do some thinking about how do we make sure that the message we have is received effectively and results in winning elections. This is something that I have been wrestling throughout my presidency…

There was a poll this week subsequent to the election that showed that the general public has a more favorable view of Democrats than Republicans. As I noted, my approval ratings are quite high yet what has been true during the course of my eight years is that does not always translate. In fact, too often it hasn’t translated into working majorities at the state level or the federal level.

Now, some of that is the nature of our system. And geography. As long as Wyoming gets the same number of Senators as California there is going to be some tilt towards Republicans when it comes to Congressional races. The fact that a lot of Democratic voters are bunched up in big cities and a lot of Republican voters are spread out across geography gives them an advantage when it comes to Congressional races. Some of it is just political bad luck.

For example, I came in as the economy was in flow fall and although I took the right steps to save the economy, in my midterm election of 2010 people couldn’t yet see the recovery and not surprisingly the president’s party got punished. We lost control of a lot of not just Congressional seats but also governorships and state legislative seats and that happened to be the year that the census was done and you start doing redistricting. And so those Republicans took advantage of political gerrymandering to lock in majorities even though in a numerous subsequent elections Democrats have actually cast more votes or more votes have been cast for Democratic Congressional candidates than Republicans and yet you end up having large Republican majorities. So there are just structural problems we have to deal with. But, look, you can’t make excuses about the rules. That’s the deal and we have to do better…

One message I do have for Democrats, that a strategy that’s micro-targeting particular discreet groups in a Democratic coalition sometimes wins the election but it does not when you the birthday mandate — the broad map date you need. And the more we can talk about what we have in common as a nation and speak to a broad set of values, a vision that speaks to everybody, and not just one group at a time, the better off we will be. That is part of the reason I was able to get elected twice that I try to make sure not only in the proposals but in message that I was speaking to everybody…

Look, I said before, President Bush could not have been more gracious to me when I came in and my intention is to certainly for the next two months, finish my job and after that to take Michelle on vacation, get some rest, spend time with my girls and do some writing, some thinking.

I want to be respectful of the office and give the president-elect an opportunity to put forward his platform and his arguments without somebody popping off in every instance.

As an American citizen who cares deeply about our country, if there are issues that have less to do with the specifics of some legislative proposal but go to core questions about our values and our ideals, and if I think that it is necessary or helpful for me to defend those ideals, I’ll examine it when it comes. But what I do know is that I have to take Michelle on vacation.

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One Response to “Reporter to Obama: Will You Be Like Bush And Not Criticize Your Successor?; Obama: I Will If “Necessary””

  1. daveyone1 Says:

    Reblogged this on World Peace Forum.

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