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Barack Obama praises ‘Great Awakening’ to challenge social norms during Joe Biden fundraiser

Former President Barack Obama headlined a virtual fundraiser Tuesday for presumed Democratic presidential nominee Joseph R. Biden, praising his former right-hand man as a healer-in-chief and saying he takes inspiration from a “Great Awakening” that has risen on President Trump’s watch to challenge political and social norms. The fundraiser marked Mr. Obama’s first campaign appearance…

Barack Obama praises ‘Great Awakening’ to challenge social norms during Joe Biden fundraiser

Former President Barack Obama headlined a virtual fundraiser Tuesday for presumed Democratic presidential nominee Joseph R. Biden, praising his former right-hand man as a healer-in-chief and saying he takes inspiration from a “Great Awakening” that has risen on President Trump’s watch to challenge political and social norms.

The fundraiser marked Mr. Obama’s first campaign appearance on behalf of Mr. Biden since he endorsed his former vice president’s bid in mid-April.

Without mentioning him by name, Mr. Obama assailed Mr. Trump, saying the White House — with an assist from congressional Republicans and the media — “has gone at the very foundations of who we are and who we should be.”

Mr. Obama said Mr. Biden, if elected, would be inheriting more challenges than when he took office in 2009 because of the way the Trump administration has rejected facts and science, suggested “a deadly disease is fake news,” promoted division, and considered “some people in this country more real as Americans than others.”

“That we haven’t seen out of the White House in a very long time,” he said.

“The good news, what makes me optimistic is, the fact that there is a Great Awakening going on around the country, particularly among younger people who are saying not only are they fed up with the shambolic, disorganized mean-spirited approach to governance that we’ve seen over the last couple of years but more than that are eager to take on some of the core challenges that have been facing this country for centuries,” Mr. Obama said.

Mr. Obama said the moment calls for a sense of urgency from voters.

“Whatever you have done so far is not enough,” he said.

Biden campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon kicked off the fundraiser, saying the campaign had received donations from 175,000 supporters and raked in $7.6 mullion, marking its largest single fundraising event of the election cycle.

The financial haul serves as a reminder of Mr. Obama’s star power and offers a preview of the roles that he, and his wife, Michelle, are expected to play as high-powered campaign surrogates over the coming months.

“I think it is a really important validation for Joe Biden from basically the most credible messenger in American politics,” said Joe Zepecki, a Wisconsin-based Democratic strategist. “Obama remains overwhelmingly popular across all segments of the electorate.

“What we are seeing in Wisconsin is voters do want more information about Joe Biden,” he said about the battleground state. “Their minds are made up about Donald Trump, but they do want to hear about Joe Biden. Barack Obama can talk about Joe Biden in a way that nobody else can.”

The Trump campaign said Mr. Obama was not thrilled with Mr. Biden’s decision to run for president and for good reason.

“We know that Sleepy Joe isn’t fit to be YOUR president,” Mr. Trump said in a fundraising email. “I know it. You know it. And even Cheatin’ Obama knows it ­­— that’s why he waited until Joe was the last man standing to formally endorse him.”

Trump campaign spokesman Ken Farnaso said Mr. Trump helped steer the nation in a more prosperous direction since taking the reins from Mr. Obama.

“In contrast, the Obama/Biden dismal track record of record-slow economic recovery and high taxes devastated our economy, and come November the American people will not put our country in the hands of that same failed leadership,” he said.

Mr. Obama stayed out of the Democratic presidential primary race until it became clear that Mr. Biden, who often touted his ties to the president, was poised to win.

It was around this time four years ago that Mr. Obama appeared for the first time on the campaign trail with Hillary Clinton, who at the time was engulfed in controversy over her use of a private email server.

This go-round, Mr. Obama returns to the political fray amid civil and racial unrest over George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis.

It has renewed questions over why Mr. Obama, the nation’s first Black president, and Mr. Biden didn’t do more to address the complaints of bad policing in minority communities.

Defending their legacy Tuesday, Mr. Obama said, “There’s nobody I trust more to be able to heal this country and get back on track than my dear friend Joe Biden.

“We have this unique chance to translate a growing awareness of injustice in society into actual legislation and institutional change … and those moments don’t come too often,” he said.

The fundraiser coincided with a Harvard CAPS/Harris poll that found Mr. Biden has doubled his lead over Mr. Trump from last month — opening up a 56% to 44% advantage among likely voters.

Mr. Trump, meanwhile, has received low marks from voters over his handling of the coronavirus, the economic collapse, and response to the protests following Floyd’s death.

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Joe Biden: Just Barack Obama without the shiny rhetoric

ANALYSIS/OPINION: For all his soaring rhetoric, former President Barack Obama really is nothing more than a typical, cheap Washington politician brimming with false promises. And Joe Biden is even worse. He is Barack Obama minus the pretty talk. Which is why Mr. Obama is working furiously now to paper over the nasty split inside the…

Joe Biden: Just Barack Obama without the shiny rhetoric

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

For all his soaring rhetoric, former President Barack Obama really is nothing more than a typical, cheap Washington politician brimming with false promises. And Joe Biden is even worse. He is Barack Obama minus the pretty talk.

Which is why Mr. Obama is working furiously now to paper over the nasty split inside the Democrat Party over picking Mr. Biden to be its nominee for president. For the second time in a row, the party poobahs pulled out all the stops to block Sen. Bernie Sanders, the socialist from Vermont, from being their party’s standard-bearer in November.

“If you look at Joe Biden’s goals and Bernie Sanders’ goals, they’re not that different from a 40,000-foot level,” Mr. Obama told the New Yorker magazine.

“They both want to make sure everybody has health care. They want to make sure everybody can get a job that pays a living wage. They want to make sure every child gets a good education,” he said.

Really? Is that so, Mr. Obama?

And Republican voters want people to not have health care? They want people unemployed? They want people to make so little money that they cannot live? They cannot feed their family? And they want children to be uneducated?

Are you really that stupid, Mr. Obama, or are you that dishonest? Seriously, which is it?

Either you are dumber than a rock or you are a flat-out liar.

Truth is, Republicans also want everyone to have health care, they want everyone to be gainfully and profitably employed, and they want every child to get a good education. The difference is how that best gets accomplished.

You believe that the federal government is the answer to every problem. Republicans understand the sober reality that the federal government simply cannot accomplish these goals. You are peddling false promises that you know — or should know — are dishonest promises.

Republicans, meanwhile, believe that individuals and the free market are the best way to accomplish these things.

Take health care, for instance.

Tell us, in your vast experience, Mr. Obama, how is the best way to “make sure everybody has health care?”

By lying to them? Telling them that if they like their doctor, you can keep him? And if they don’t, they can pick an even better doctor? For free!

Everyone now knows that is a total lie. You are making it up.

What about jobs for everyone, Mr. Obama?

In your tremendous history as a “community organizer” what is the best way to give somebody a job? You never gave a single person a job whose salary didn’t come from the innocent taxpayer. Except, of course, when you were running political campaigns — still using other people’s money.

And now we know you were lying the whole time.

Now if you really want to know how to create an environment where the most people possible earn a “living wage,” Mr. Obama, you should ask the current occupant of the White House. He actually has a lifelong record of hiring people with his own money.

In addition, President Trump also has a stunning record of lowering unemployment and increasing workforce participation to levels that you, Mr. Obama, could only have dreamed of. Furthermore, Mr. Trump also has a stunning record of creating an environment were people saw their incomes go up.

But, I guess, as you famously claimed, all credit in all things goes to your great deity on high, the federal government.

“You didn’t build that,” you might say.

• Charles Hurt is opinion editor of The Washington Times. He can be reached at [email protected] or @charleshurt on Twitter.

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Barack Obama joins Joe Biden for ‘socially distant conversation’

In this Jan. 4, 2017, file photo, then-Vice President Joe Biden, left, watches President Barack Obama, center, at Conmy Hall, Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall, Va. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh) ** FILE ** more > By David Sherfinski – The Washington Times – Wednesday, July 22, 2020 Former President Barack Obama joined presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joseph…

Barack Obama joins Joe Biden for ‘socially distant conversation’

In this Jan. 4, 2017, file photo, then-Vice President Joe Biden, left, watches President Barack Obama, center, at Conmy Hall, Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall, Va. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh) ** FILE ** more>

By David Sherfinski

The Washington Times

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Former President Barack Obama joined presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joseph R. Biden for a “socially distant conversation” about the coronavirus pandemic and other issues facing the United States that will be streamed on social media on Thursday.

Mr. Biden asks Mr. Obama if he could imagine standing up as president and saying “I take no responsibility” — a reference to a quote from President Trump earlier this year about coronavirus testing.

“Those words didn’t come out of our mouths while we were in office,” Mr. Obama said in a preview released by the Biden campaign on Wednesday.

The former president also complimented his former vice president on his ability to “relate” to people.

The video could be a signal that Mr. Obama is preparing to become more active in the 2020 presidential campaign.

He teamed up with Mr. Biden for a fundraiser last month and spoke at a fundraising event on behalf of House Democrats this past weekend.

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Barack Obama to headline Joe Biden fundraiser next week

Former President Barack Obama is slated to team up with Joseph R. Biden on the virtual campaign trail next week to raise money for Mr. Biden’s 2020 presidential bid. Mr. Obama will headline a virtual fundraiser targeting small donors for Mr. Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee, marking the first time he has teamed up with…

Barack Obama to headline Joe Biden fundraiser next week

Former President Barack Obama is slated to team up with Joseph R. Biden on the virtual campaign trail next week to raise money for Mr. Biden’s 2020 presidential bid.

Mr. Obama will headline a virtual fundraiser targeting small donors for Mr. Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee, marking the first time he has teamed up with his former vice president since endorsing him in April shortly after Sen. Bernard Sanders suspended his bid.

“This is a critical moment in our history — and we need Americans of all backgrounds and political stripes to join together and fight to create a more just, more generous, more democratic America where everybody has a fair shot at opportunity,” Mr. Obama said in a Biden campaign email. That’s why I am so excited to be joining my friend Joe Biden to talk about his vision for the country.”

The event is scheduled for 5:15 p.m. on Tuesday, June 23.

“In November, we have the chance to rebuild our economy so that it works for everyone,” Mr. Obama said in the email. “We have the chance to cover everybody with health insurance. We have the chance to declare that no matter what we look like, where we come from, or who we love — all of us are equal and each of us should have the chance to make of our lives what we will.”

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