Trump Aides Caution Obama Against Lame Duck Palestinian State Push


Politico reports: Before Donald Trump won the presidency, Democratic foreign policy circles hummed with talk that an outgoing President Barack Obama could take a last stab at peace talks between the Israelis and the Palestinians. There also was a strong expectation that Obama would push hard for Congress to approve the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal.

But now that they’re on the verge of power, Trump aides say Obama shouldn’t even think about taking such steps.

“On big, transformative issues where President Obama and President-elect Trump are not in alignment, I don’t think it’s in keeping with the spirit of the transition … to try to push through agenda items that are contrary to the president-elect’s positions,” a Trump national security adviser told POLITICO on Thursday. “It’s not going to be just counterproductive, but it will also send mixed messages.”

Presidential transitions are often fraught, messy affairs, especially when White House control is switching from one political party to another. (Some Clinton administration officials, famously, took the “w” off their keyboards as the Bush team was coming aboard.)

Outgoing presidents try to lock down their policies however they can, whether through executive orders, regulations or legislation. Incoming administrations try to lay the groundwork for what they want to do without declaring open war on the people they are replacing.

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