Obama goes tough on Trump

President Obama

President of the United States, Mr. Barack Obama said in a radio interview that began airing on Monday that Donald J. Trump, leading contender for the Republican presidential nomination for 2016 presidential elections, was exploiting the resentment and anxieties of working-class men to boost his campaign. Mr. Obama also said further that some of the scorn directed at him personally stemmed from the fact that he is the first African-American to hold the highest office at the White House. According to the NewyorkTimes, President Obama accused Donald Trump of “exploiting” economic woes to tap into voter “fear” and “frustration,” in some of his most direct criticism to date of the Republican primary front-runner seeking to replace him.

Obama’s detailed criticism of Trump’s strategy

Asked to expand on his claims, and speak to concerns in some corners that Obama is trying to change the country in an unwelcome way, President Obama got into a contentious exchange with National Public Radio’s Steve Inskeep that touched on the issue of race. He suggested there are “certain circumstances around being the first African-American president that might not have confronted a previous president.” According to Foxnews, he also pointed to “specific strains in the Republican Party that suggest that somehow I’m different, I’m Muslim, I’m disloyal to the country, etc., which unfortunately is pretty far out there and gets some traction in certain pockets of the Republican Party.” But he added: “But that’s not to suggest that everybody who objects to my policies may not have perfectly good reasons for it.”

Obama on ISIS

On the Islamic State, which is also called ISIS or ISIL, Mr. Obama pushed back against criticism of his approach and said he was “confident that we are going to prevail.” “This is a serious challenge — ISIS is a virulent, nasty organization that has gained a foothold in ungoverned spaces effectively in Syria and parts of western Iraq,” Mr. Obama said, referring to attacks the group organized in Paris and apparently inspired in San Bernardino. “But it is also important for us to keep things in perspective, and this is not an organization that can destroy the United States.”