Politico’s Ryan Lizza reported on Tuesday how former President Barack Obama felt after sharing an awkward meeting with Donald Trump back in 2017.
Obama, who has been, for the most part, quiet about Trump and his presidency, is now being called to be more outspoken.
According to Lizza, Obama had originally planned “a relaxed post-presidency of writing and thinking and mentoring,” but Trump’s surge to the presidency and Biden’s subsequent 2020 challenge forced Obama back into the center of politics.
“This was not the hand he got to play,” Lizza writes. “Throughout 2017 the main struggle of the small staff Obama assembled in the West End was how to deal with what they viewed as a crazy president personally obsessed with Obama. After running against Obama’s legacy, and then holding one awkward but collegial meeting in the White House—’He knows absolutely nothing,’ Obama privately told a visitor about Trump, immediately after the meeting—Trump discarded historical precedent and began attacking Obama personally as he worked to overturn his policies. For the most part, Obama and his staff chose to ignore the personal and weighed in only on big policy questions.”
According to Obama’s first post-presidential press secretary, Kevin Lewis, one of Trump’s goals was to “drag Obama out of retirement” because he “needs an enemy.” As Trump’s presidency dragged on, Obama’s public statements “inevitably became, longer, more frequent, and signed by Obama himself, not his spokesman.”
You can read the entire Politico piece HERE.