United States President Barack Obama – who will leave office on January 20 – admitted that he cried at a recent senior staff send-off dinner following President-elect Donald Trump’s victory, and now claims had the Constitution let him seek a third term he would have decisively trounced Trump.
Speaking to his former aide David Axelrod in a podcast interview titled The Axe Files, Obama said: “I am confident in this vision because I’m confident that if I had run again and articulated it, I think I could’ve mobilized a majority of the American people to rally behind it.”
“I know that in conversations that I’ve had with people around the country, even some people who disagreed with me, they would say, ‘The vision, the direction that you point towards is the right one,’” the outgoing president said.
The Constitution limits a president to serving only two terms. The 22nd Amendment to the Constitution, passed in 1947 after President Franklin D. Roosevelt had been elected to four terms, limits chief executives to two terms in office.
Obama showered praises on his staff, saying their “heart” and “idealism” inspired him to successful two terms as head of state.
“We had our senior staff dinner … I got through about four minutes of the thing and started getting the hanky out,” he admitted.
Obama said it feels like the “band” is breaking up, but that he wants to devote his post-presidency to growing the “talent” and vision that began in his two terms as president of the United States.
“Overall, this place never got cynical,” he said, praising the many aides he’s had over the years. We never had that fire snuffed out. That is a point of pride for me,” he added.
The president also looked forward to leaving the White House, saying he’s going to take his wife, Michelle, on a “nice” vacation because “she deserves it.”
Donald Trump has taken to Twitter to respond to Obama’s claims, thumping for his victory had he faced Obama in the November 8 U.S. Presidential election.
“President Obama said that he thinks he would have won against me. He should say that but I say NO WAY! — jobs leaving, ISIS, OCare, etc.,” he tweeted Monday afternoon.
Republican Donald Trump gained victory over Democrat Hillary Clinton in the November 8 U.S. Presidential election, despite Clinton having the support of sitting President Barack Obama.
Trump secured 304 Electoral College votes to Hillary Clinton’s 227 on December 19 to cement his election as head of state.
– Additional reporting by the New York Post