Video: Obama Says Republicans Should Withdraw Support for Trump

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White House

President Barack Obama on Tuesday issued one of his sharpest denouncements of Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump calling him “unfit to serve as president.”

Here is entire five minute statement where he not only questions Trump’s qualification and knowledge, but also suggests that Republicans should withdraw their support for Trump if they find themselves having to distance themselves from the statements he is making.

Transcript And Video

Related Story: MN GOP Congressional Candidates Back Trump Despite His Statements

“Yes, I think the Republican nominee is unfit to serve as President. I said so last week, and he keeps on proving it. The notion that he would attack a Gold Star family that had made such extraordinary sacrifices on behalf of our country, the fact that he doesn’t appear to have basic knowledge around critical issues in Europe, in the Middle East, in Asia, means that he’s woefully unprepared to do this job.

“And this is not just my opinion. I think what’s been interesting is the repeated denunciations of his statements by leading Republicans, including the Speaker of the House and the Senate Majority Leader, and prominent Republicans like John McCain. And the question I think that they have to ask themselves is, if you are repeatedly having to say in very strong terms that what he has said is unacceptable, why are you still endorsing him? What does this say about your party that this is your standard bearer? This isn’t a situation where you have an episodic gaffe. This is daily, and weekly, where they are distancing themselves from statements he’s making. There has to be a point in which you say, this is not somebody I can support for President of the United States, even if he purports to be a member of my party.

“And the fact that that has not yet happened makes some of these denunciations ring hollow. I don’t doubt their sincerity. I don’t doubt that they were outraged about some of the statements that Mr. Trump and his supporters made about the Khan family. But there has to come a point at which you say somebody who makes those kinds of statements doesn’t have the judgment, the temperament, the understanding to occupy the most powerful position in the world.

“Because a lot of people depend on the White House getting stuff right, and this is different than just having policy disagreements. I recognize that they all profoundly disagree with myself or Hillary Clinton on tax policy or on certain elements of foreign policy. But there have been Republican Presidents with whom I disagreed with, but I didn’t have a doubt that they could function as President. I think I was right, and Mitt Romney and John McCain were wrong on certain policy issues, but I never thought that they couldn’t do the job. And had they won, I would have been disappointed, but I would have said to all Americans they are — this is our President, and I know they’re going to abide by certain norms and rules and common sense, will observe basic decency, will have enough knowledge about economic policy and foreign policy and our constitutional traditions and rule of law that our government will work, and then we’ll compete four years from now to try to win an election.

“But that’s not the situation here. And that’s not just my opinion; that is the opinion of many prominent Republicans. There has to come a point at which you say, enough. And the alternative is that the entire party, the Republican Party, effectively endorses and validates the positions that are being articulated by Mr. Trump. And as I said in my speech last week, I don’t think that actually represents the views of a whole lot of Republicans out there.”

Michael McIntee

Michael McIntee is a former network TV news executive with more than 30 years of broadcasting experience. He began his broadcasting career at the University of Minnesota's student radio station. He is an expert producer, writer, video editor who has a fondness for new technology but denies that he is a geek. More about Michael McIntee »

15 thoughts on “Video: Obama Says Republicans Should Withdraw Support for Trump

  1. Obama’s objective analysis of Trump is interesting especially where he urges Republicans to withdraw support. After all — what possible reason would he have to urge Republicans to do that? I guess he is offering his own objective recommendation for their benefit because he is looking out for the Republicans. I don’t know if he thinks he’s helping his cause or what but I guess it’s easier than campaigning for his own candidate. BTW, folks, during his DNC speech, he mentioned himself more often than he mentioned Herself. Find the speech and see.

  2. The sum of 2+2 is greater than the sum of 2+1, but WHO CARES? In the end Republicans can only benefit from taking this non-partisan advice. It is really just about an unfit candidate. I think you should re-read that article.

  3. He wants him to be replaced, why he is afraid he can actually beat Hillary Clinton. He can blame everything on Trump in the future if he wins, he can only blame himself if Hillary is a disaster.

  4. I would look into the possibility that Donald is being paid by the Democrats to run. What other explanation is there for his behavior?

  5. Steve,
    If you read Obama’s statement, you will see how this is different from simple partisan politics. This is not a normal election. It is the election that will show the character of the GOP, or their willingness to allow a catastrophe that dwarfs anything Hillary could do in four years. Obama is simply pointing out that the GOP fully recognizes Trump is a disaster waiting to happen. Are they going to allow that to occur? Or are they going to exhibit real leadership and character and ensure that Trump does not occupy the White House?

    Sure, I’m a Democrat. But I have never seen a candidate like this in the seven presidential elections I’ve voted in. Did you see the news this morning about Trump REPEATEDLY asking in a briefing on global security “But if we have nuclear bombs, why can’t we use them?” He doesn’t understand the fundamentals of the mutually assured destruction doctrine or the consequences to the US if we deploy a nuke. And I am not some anti-nuke ban-the-bomb guy. I do not support US disarmament, but I don’t trust someone who cannot understand the risk of retribution (not to mention the devastation to the global economy following a nuclear exchange.)

  6. Jim,
    Can you point me to any Democrats in the House or Senate distancing themselves from Hillary’s positions? How is this a “glass house” situation?

  7. I’m taking Obama’s statement at face value. But if it is intended to influence voters, it would influence undecided voters in Senate and House races. The GOP candidates for Congress need to decide if they are going to lash themselves to the anchor known as Trump, or if they are going to risk angering Trump voters but preserving their own credibility for future races.

  8. Since about 1972, the US has had, and still does have, a “second strike” policy of Mutually Assured Destruction which kept the peace and the world away from the unthinkable during much of the Cold War. I was a part of that world while serving aboard one of 41 fleet ballistic missile submarines in use by the Navy at that time. Submarines possessed 55% of America’s nuclear strike capability, and Air Force bombers and land based ICBM missiles accounted for the rest.

    With that said, when Ronald Reagan was campaigning for president in 1980, he often implied that he would not hesitate to use strategic (nuclear) weapons against the Soviet Union. Initially, he never mentioned the term, “second strike.” His words sent the Soviets, and many in the West for that matter, into a panic of uncertainty. Ultimately, the Soviets agreed that it was time to end the Cold War.

    As for disarmement, nuclear proliferation talks are not meant to disarm, but merely to get a handle on nuclear weapons inventories through limitation agreements and treaties and convince our adversaries to do the same. As a nation, we are hardwired to never allow another Pearl Harbor style attack on our fighting capabilities, or 9/11 strike against our homeland. A successful nuclear strike against the United States and the West, and the immediate counter-strike by the US against a nuclear aggressor would have far more than a negative effect on economies. Such a war would be fast, decisive and totally catastrophic in terms of global destruction.

  9. Trump didn’t become the Republican nominee by accident. Many who are now trying to distance themselves from him were (or presumably still are) “birthers”, anti-immigrant, disrespectful of women and minorities and voted to defund the ACA at least 50 times. Trump doesn’t sound any more nutty to me than the so called “Freedom Caucus” whose members have vowed to oppose anything the President proposes. It’s just that he’s more outspoken and through some weird series of event has taken the main stage. But it’s the same voter base the Republicans have been appealing to for the last 50 years who put Trump in this position. So their yellow chickens has come home to roost. They are running scared now because Trump will take down their majority in congress, a majority that was engineered with big money thanks to “citizens united” and taking control of the state legislatures to gerrymander House Districts so many effectively run unapposed. As a progressive I couldn’t be happier. Thank-you Donald Trump.

  10. I believe Jim was referring to the comment, “unfit to be president”. Yes, Obama was so damn terrible..record US GDP growth, Record low Unemployment rates, no wars, rebuilt housing and auto crash, got tough on corrupt wallstreet/banks..what a horrible, unfit president /sarcasm

  11. Jim A has a point. Paying ransoms, supporting a sketchy attorney general, secretary of defense. Jimmy Carter in his last days can at least breath a sigh of relief knowing he will no longer be considered the worst US president ever. And what about that record commutation of criminals?….Ploy for votes? Think about that.

  12. This is considered “news”? Maybe if he said democrats should not support Hillary.