Former US President Barack Obama listens as then-vice president Joe Biden speak at the White House complex in Washington. Biden is getting some help from Obama as he looks to fill his campaign coffers and unify the Democratic party ahead of the November election. File picture: Carolyn Kaster/AP
Former US President Barack Obama listens as then-vice president Joe Biden speak at the White House complex in Washington. Biden is getting some help from Obama as he looks to fill his campaign coffers and unify the Democratic party ahead of the November election. File picture: Carolyn Kaster/AP

Obama rips into 'mean-spirited' White House at election event with Biden

By Chiara Palazzo Time of article published Jun 24, 2020

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Washington - Former US president Barack Obama on Tuesday blasted the "shambolic, disorganized, mean-spirited approach to governance over the last couple of years" as he took part in the first joint 2020 election event with presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden.

In the address, part of a virtual fundraiser which some 175,000 people signed up for, pool reports cited Obama as blasting "a White House enabled by Republicans in Congress and a media structure ... [which] has gone at the very foundations of who we are and who we should be.

"That suggests facts don't matter, science doesn't matter. That suggests that a deadly disease is fake news. That sees the Justice Department as simply an extension and arm of the personal concerns of the president.

"That actively promotes division. And considers some people in this country more real as Americans than others," Obama continued, according to pool reports.

The former president, who did not name his successor Donald Trump or specific US officials, dug deep as he said that while he disagreed with his Republican predecessor George W Bush "on a whole host of issues" he "still had a basic regard for the rule of law and the importance of our institutions."

Obama went on to praise the "Great Awakening" going on in the US, particularly among younger people."

"[They] are saying not only are they fed up with the shambolic, disorganized, mean-spirited approach to governance that we've seen over the last couple of years but more than that are eager to take on some of the core challenges that have been facing this country for centuries."

The virtual event raised a "remarkable" 7.6 million dollars for Biden's campaign, pool reports cited the candidate as saying in hist opening remarks.

Since leaving the White House in early 2017, Obama had largely refrained from criticizing the Trump administration, following a convention among former US presidents.

But he has changed his tune over the past couple of months, after officially endorsing his former vice president in the race for the White House.

The popular former president took aim at how officials have been dealing with the coronavirus pandemic, again without mentioning Trump by name, in two separate speeches to college and high school graduates in May.

dpa

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