x

Politics

Obama Says Trump’s Ideas “Wacky”

September 8, 2016

VIENTIANE, Laos — President Barack Obama said Sept. 8 that Republican Donald Trump proves he isn’t qualified to be President “every time he speaks,” adding that he was confident Americans would ultimately reject the brash billionaire on Election Day.

Obama, closing out his final presidential trip to Asia, said his meetings with foreign leaders during the trip had illustrated that governing is “serious business” requiring knowledge, preparation and thought-out policies that can actually be implemented.

He urged Americans not to allow the “outrageous behavior” seen amid the campaign-season din to become the new normal.

“The most important thing for the public and the press is to just listen to what he says and follow up and ask questions to what appear to be either contradictory or uninformed or outright whacky ideas,” Obama said.

Throughout the campaign, Obama has repeatedly denounced Trump and deemed him “unfit” to serve as Commander-in-Chief, arguing that he’s pulling the Republican Party in a dangerous and unprecedented direction.

Obama has endorsed Hillary Clinton and has said he plans to campaign full-force for the Democrat ahead of the November election.

Obama’s remarks came at the end of a grueling nine-day trip that took him to Laos and China following U.S. stops in Nevada, Hawaii and Midway Atoll in the Pacific Ocean.

It’s the last of 10 trips Obama paid as President to Asia, where Obama lived as a youngster with his mother in Indonesia.

“When I think back to the time I spent here as a boy, I can’t help but be struck by the extraordinary progress that’s been made by the region in the decades since, even if there’s still a lot of work to be done,” Obama said.

At the top of the list of unfinished business is the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a 12-nation free trade deal Obama helped broker.

That deal awaits ratification in the U.S. Congress, where there is opposition from both parties. But Obama said he planned to do everything possible to persuade lawmakers to approve it this year.

With his presidency nearing an end, Obama’s agenda has narrowed to a few key goals he hopes to complete before his successor takes over.

Asked to acknowledge he wouldn’t be able to fulfill his campaign promise to close the Guantanamo Bay detention center, Obama pushed back.

“I am not ready to concede,” Obama said, adding that his Administration was making progress in reducing the prison’s population.

He bristled at the suggestion he’d been slighted in Asia or that leaders in the region were rejecting his leadership — a criticism leveled by Trump, who said he’d have picked up and left had he been treated the way Obama was in Asia.

The start of the trip was overshadowed by tense moments on the tarmac when Chinese officials clashed with White House aides and appeared to have failed to secure a staircase for Obama’s plane — moments that exploded on social media.

The awkwardness continued days later when Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte called Obama a “son of a bitch” and warned him not to challenge him in their planned meeting in Laos, leading Obama to call it off.

The two did end up shaking hands during a brief interaction on the summit’s sidelines. Obama said he’d told Duterte that their aides should confer on how to move forward, adding that the spat would have no effect on the close cooperation between the longtime treaty allies.

“I don’t take these comments personally, because it seems as if this is a phrase he’s used repeatedly, directed at the pope and others,” Obama said of the slur. “I think it seems to be just a, you know, a habit, a way of speaking for him.”

As an example of progress on his trip, Obama pointed to discussions with Southeast Asian leaders about disputes over China’s territorial ambitions in the South China Sea.

In a concluding joint statement, the leaders were expected to issue a mild rebuke to China without referencing it by name or mentioning a recent international arbitration ruling against Beijing.

“I realize this raises tensions,” Obama said earlier about the ruling. “But I also look forward to discussing how we can constructively move forward together to lower tensions and promote diplomacy and regional stability.”

On his last day in Asia, Obama met with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, whose help Obama is seeking to galvanize further action on climate change, especially among developing countries.

The White House said Obama had affirmed his support for India’s participation in the Nuclear Suppliers Group, a consortium aimed at preventing civilian nuclear technology from diverted for military use. Pakistan, India’s longtime adversary, opposes India’s membership in the group.

(JOSH LEDERMAN and KATHLEEN HENNESSEY)

RELATED

Top Stories

Columnists

A pregnant woman was driving in the HOV lane near Dallas.

General News

FALMOUTH, MA – The police in Falmouth have identified the victim in an accident involving a car plunging into the ocean on February 20, NBC10 Boston reported.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.

Video

Warnock or Walker? Georgia Runoff to Settle Last Senate Seat

ATLANTA — Georgia voters on Tuesday are set to decide the final Senate contest in the country, choosing between Democratic Sen.

The coronavirus pandemic interrupted efforts to control malaria, resulting in 63,000 additional deaths and 13 million more infections globally over two years, according to a report from the World Health Organization published Thursday.

DALLAS — Southwest Airlines said Wednesday that it is bringing back dividends for shareholders, which it suspended when the pandemic devastated the airline business in early 2020.

ATHENS - At the end of August 2022, I announced a legislative initative for the upgrading and modernisation of the protection, the operation of the security agencies and the operation of the communications and after the change in National Intelligence Service's (EYP) leadership and the establishment of double check to the legal intrusions," stated Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis addressing the parliament on Thursday during the debate on Justice Minstry's bill on the lifting of the communications confidentiality, cybersecurity and protection of the citizens' personal data.

WASHINGTON, DC – The Modern Greek Studies Program and Hellenic Association of Georgetown University hosted “A Conversation with Acclaimed Actress/Author/Director Mimi Denissi on Art and Cultural Diplomacy” on December 5 in the McGhee Library of Georgetown University’s Intercultural Center.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. abc@xyz.com

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.