In some of his most serious language to date, President Obama lectured members of the White House press for their coverage of Donald Trump, warning them to avoid the “spectacle” of the controversial billionaire.
“I speak to all of you in this room as reporters, as well as the American public, I think, I just want to emphasize the degree to which we are in serious times and this is a really serious job,” he said. “This is not entertainment. This is not a reality show. This is a contest for the presidency of the United States.”
Obama added that he was “concerned” that reporters were too interested in the drama of the 2016 campaign, rather than the serious issues of the day.
“What I’m concerned about is the degree to which reporting and information starts emphasizing the spectacle and the circus,” he said. “Because that’s not something we can afford.”
In response, one reporter appeared to ignore Obama’s request by questioning him about Donald Trump’s taco bowl Tweet on Cinco De Mayo.
“I have no thoughts on Mr. Trump’s Tweets … as a general rule, I don’t pay attention to Mr. Trump’s Tweets,” Obama said shortly. “I think that will be true for the next six months, so you can just file that one.”
Obama warned Republicans, especially women, to take a close look at Trump, asking them to consider whether he represented their values.
“I think Republican women, voters, are going to have to decide, is that the guy I feel comfortable with in representing me and what I care about?”