Former US President Barack Obama said managing coronavirus pandemic by his successor Donald Trump has been “an absolute chaotic mess,” US media reported Saturday.
Obama made the harsh criticism, the most explicit that he has done so far, on Friday night during a half-hour telephone conversation with former collaborators of his government and from which Yahoo News got a recording.
In the talk, the former Democratic president mentioned the response to the health crisis to refer to the need to choose good leaders and ask his former advisers to get involved in the campaign of Joe Biden, his former vice president and virtual Democratic candidate for the presidency in November against Trump.
“The next elections, at all levels, are very important because we will not only face an individual or a political party,” he said, according to his statements reported by various media.
And he added that the real adversary is “long-term trends” such as “being tribal, being divided, seeing others as enemies,” which threatens to settle into “American life.”
Still very popular among Democrats, Obama previously hinted that the Republican billionaire had “dismissed warnings” about the risks of a pandemic.
Trump’s detractors accuse the president of having minimized the threat first and after giving contradictory and confusing instructions, between calls for prudence and the rush to revive the economy.
In Friday’s conversation, the first black president of the United States (2009-2017) also referred to the Justice Department’s controversial decision to close the case against Michael Flynn, a former Trump adviser prosecuted for lying about his contacts with a Russian diplomat.
“There is no precedent that can be found for a person accused of perjury who gets away with it,” Obama said.
“That’s the kind of thing you start worrying about the basic understanding, not just institutional norms, but our basic understanding of the rule of law is at risk.”
“When you take that path, this can go very quickly, as we have seen elsewhere,” he added and asked not to underestimate this event.
There, he also stresses, there is a reason to support his former vice president.
“That is why I will spend as much time as necessary to campaign as intensely as possible for Joe Biden,” he said.