Typically when a president leaves office they retire from public life, at least for a while, to enjoy the fruits of their labor as a private citizen. They will also, typically, hold their tongues about the incoming president, out of a measure of respect. However, the 2016 presidential election has been anything but typical, and Donald Trump deserving of absolutely no respect, so President Barack Obama has vowed not to go quietly into the sunset after Donald Trump is sworn in as the 45th President of the United States in just a few short weeks.
Obama conducted an exit interview on CNN with former senior advisor David Axelrod, and the President indicated he is not going to sit on the sidelines like presidents of past if he finds President-elect Trump’s behavior and policies to threaten democracy. Obama said:
At a certain point, you make room for new voices and fresh legs. That doesn’t mean that if there is an issue of such moment, such import, that isn’t just a debate about a particular tax bill or, you know, a particular policy, but goes to some foundational issues about our democracy, that I might not weigh in.
In what was a small slight pointed towards Hillary Clinton, who lost in a stunning upset to Trump, Obama declared – in a dig that he knew would greatly irritate our new spoilt-child in chief, he announced that had he had the opportunity to run for president again, he would surely have beaten Trump. Obama said:
I am confident in this vision because I’m confident that if I had run again and articulated it, I think I could’ve mobilized a majority of the American people to rally behind it.
Unfortunately for every citizen around the world, the 22nd Amendment prevents a sitting president from having more than two terms in office. In specific, the amendment states:
No person shall be elected to the office of the President more than twice, and no person who has held the office of President, or acted as President, for more than two years of a term to which some other person was elected President shall be elected to the office of the President more than once.
The prospect of Obama being unhindered by his responsibilities as president, while using his brilliant oratorical skills to attack Trump, will surely send shivers down the spines of the Republican leadership. As Obama pointed out, “You know, I’m still a citizen and that carries with it duties and obligations.” One hopes Obama will carry on with his civic responsibilities as the Trump presidency will surely be unlike any previous administration and the American people are going to need all of the help they can muster to defend against Trump’s open and shameless grabs towards power.
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