Obama Delivers Fiery Rebuke of ‘Demagogues’ at Rally: ‘Bigots’ and ‘Fear Mongers’ are Exploiting U.S. History
Without naming names, former President Barack Obama railed against “demagogues,” “bigots,” and “fear mongers” during a fiery campaign speech Thursday night in Ohio.
Speaking at a rally in Cleveland in support of Ohio Democratic candidate for governor Richard Cordray, the former president slammed politicians who are trying to stoke division and play off of people’s fears.
“People are stressed,” Obama said. “And they’re anxious. And it seems that all the chatter and anger on television doesn’t match up to their lives. And it frays our civic trust. And it makes people feel that the game is rigged, and nobody’s looking out for them. And historically, in those kinds of conditions, that’s ripe for opportunists to try to exploit America’s history of division. Racial, ethnic, religious.”
The president went on to mention “bigots” and “fear mongers” attempting to exploit the political divide.
“In a healthy democracy, when everybody’s participating, and paying attention, and listening, voting, people of good will in both parties, they call out bigots and fear mongers,” Obama said. “And then they work to compromise. They work to get things done.”
The former president added, “When there’s a vacuum in our democracy, when we don’t vote, when we take our basic rights for granted, other voices fill the void. Demagogues get out there. They promise simple fixes to complicated problems.”
Again, no names were mentioned. But Obama did, at one point, make reference to “the person in the White House.”
Watch above, via NBC.
[featured image via screengrab]