In an interview with one of his staunchest supporters, Barack Obama said he would have beaten Donald Trump in a head to head matchup.
What would it be of life without people having dreams? It would be a boring heartless endeavor. After all, dreaming is free and that includes the US President, Barack Hussein Obama.
“I could have mobilized a majority of the American people,” he said in an interview. According to Obama, he would have come out victorious against Donald Trump, had he been the Democratic candidate in 2016.
Even though the 2016 election was a direct repudiation to his policies and his eight years in office, the first black president of the United States, who laughed at Donald Trump after he launched his camapaign in 2015, does not seem to be willing to go away quietly.
While he criticizes Trump’s so-called excessive use of social media to talk to the American people and the world, Obama has made use of his strongest supporters, the mainstream media, to launched direct and indirect attacks and criticism against the movement led by Trump.
Obama has not left office yet, but he already fully immersed into the process of introspection being carried out at the Democratic Party after the defeat of Hillary Clinton in the presidential elections.
In an interview broadcast Monday, the US president believes that if he was eligible for a third term, he would have been able to win the election.
“I trust that vision because I trust that if I had presented myself again to the elections and articulated it, I think I could have mobilized a majority of the American people to back it,” said Obama.
Despite the falsehood in his message of hope and change, which never actually materialized, Obama bet that the result of the election would have favored him and the Democratic Party last November 8.
Obama says he has been able to see that there are Republicans who see that vision and that it continues to prevail.
“With Trump’s victory, a lot of people have suggested that it was somehow a fantasy,” he said of the conciliatory rhetoric that brought him to the White House in 2009.
“What I would argue is that culture really changed, that most buy the notion of a single America that is tolerant and diverse, open and full of energy and dynamism.”
Obama, who will leave the White House on January 20, only credits Republicans with having been very effective in trying to rebut his message, but he also implicitly acknowledges mistakes by the Democrats and Clinton.
Since the defeat in the last election, Obama has suggested that Clinton should have campaigned more on the ground in conservative states to counteract the appeal of Trump’s populist anti-Establishment discourse.
“What we need to do is spend more time on ensuring that we appear in places where Democratic policies make a difference but where people feel they are not being heard and where Democrats are prevalent, such as coastal, progressive, politically correct, distant people,” said Obama in mid-December at his last press conference of the year.
In the interview with David Axelrod, Obama avoided criticizing Clinton. He claimed that his former Secretary of State “acted great under very harsh circumstances” and was treated unfairly by the media.
Clinton had all the corporate media supporting her. From the New York Times to the Washington Post, from CNN to MSNBC; so called journalists and pundits left no ammo in their weaponry as they pushed Clinton as the inevitable winner of the November elections.
Clinton’s loss in November was also the cherry on the top of the pie for independent media, that altough had to fight an up hill battle in terms of lack of resources and a slowly growing audience, strongly defeated Clinton’s media machinery.
If up to the election the mainstream media had felt the power of independently produced content, independent media outlets have risen over the corporate mouthpieces and now enjoy substantially larger audiences than ever before.
While the average highly rated news show on any major news network reach as little as 200,000 viewers, any independent media video, audio or podcast easily reaches five times that or more. That is why Obama and the corporate giants that distribute independent media content are now looking for ways to decimate the rise of the new media. Both Clinton and Obama did it during the campaign and they are still at it right now.
Let’s not forget that Obama handed out control of the Internet to a group of unaccountable “experts” and that Facebook, Google and Twitter have now embraced the notion that any news that does not come from the echo chamber known as the mainstream media can be flagged and even censored as “fake news”.
On Clinton’s failure to connect with voters, Obama insinuated that Clinton should have focused more on those voters who still do not sufficiently see in their pockets the effects of the economic recovery and who were appealed to by Trump’s “rupturist speech”.
Most of those voters were indeed connected to independent media and it was through that connection that they broke off the trance in which they were for the past 8 years.
“We were not on the ground conveying, besides the aspects of pure and hard politics, that we are concerned about these communities, that we are bleeding through these communities,” he said.
The question that many of these former Obama supporters asked before the election is why would they give Obama and Clinton a third term if they showed no signs of knowing what to do to bring the economy back in 8 years.
Obama also mentioned a possible excess of optimism: “If you think you are winning, you have the tendency to play conservative.”
In the interview, Obama also addressed his future. Unlike most former presidents, Obama will continue to live in Washington DC, until her young daughter finishes her studies, he wants to write a book and reflect on his presidency.
When Trump takes office, he will adopt a low profile, he says, but warns that he will raise his voice if he believes it is essential. “I have to be quiet for a while, and I do not mean politics, but internally.
“You have to get back in tune with your center and process what has happened before making a lot of good decisions,” he says. It is expected that Obama will lead a large opposition movement from the left to make Trump’s life as difficult as possible as president of the United States. With most of his legacy gone, Obama has nothing to lose once he is out of office.