Former President Barack Obama heaped praise on his predecessor, former President George W. Bush, during a virtual campaign fundraiser for presumptive Democrat nominee Joe Biden.
“I don’t think I have to reiterate the situation that we find ourselves in right now,” Obama began. “Things were tough in 2008, 2009. We were going through the worst recession since the Great Depression, a massive financial crisis. We were still in the midst of two wars.” He went on to say:
President Barack Obama on George W. Bush: "My predecessor, who I disagreed with on a whole host of issues, still had a basic regard for the rule of law." pic.twitter.com/jRjR9TKTOH
— The Hill (@thehill) June 24, 2020
We, I think, were overcoming a decade in which the possibilities of common work and common purpose had been diminished and downgraded and government had been starved of the resources that were needed to make us a more equal and just and compassionate society, and yet, I have to say that the foundation stones, the institutions we had in place were still more or less intact. My predecessor, who I disagreed with on a whole host of issues, still had a basic regard for the rule of law and the importance of our institutions and democracy. On the world stage, there was still a sense that America needed to lead, and that that leadership meant that as imperfect as we might be, there were certain ideals and values that were going to aspire to and advance.
“That we cared about human rights, we cared about battling against the oppression of peoples in distant lands,” he added.
Later in the fundraiser, Obama once again lashed out at the Trump administration and Senate Republicans, accusing them of taking a “shambolic, disorganized, mean spirited approach to government.” He said:
What we have seen over the last couple of years is a White House enabled by Republicans in Congress and a media structure that supports them that has not just differed in terms of policy but has gone at the very foundations of who we are and who we should be. That suggests facts don’t matter, science doesn’t matter, that suggests a deadly disease is fake news.
The former president added, “That actively promotes division. And that considers some Americans in this country more real than others. That, we haven’t seen out of the White House in a very long time.”
The fundraiser was Obama’s first appearance with Biden in the 2020 campaign season, raising a recond $11 million from at least 175,000 donors.