Former President Barack Obama will deliver a harsh assessment of President Donald Trump and pledge that Joe Biden will lead the country ‘out of dark times’ in an address set at the Museum of the American Revolution in Philadelphia Wednesday night.
There, he’ll vouch for his ‘friend’ and ‘brother,’ former Vice President Joe Biden, while casting President Trump as a man who has never taken his job seriously or done it well.
‘He’s shown no interest in putting in the work, no interest in finding common ground, no interest in using the awesome power of his office to help anyone but himself and his friends,’ Obama will say in remarks to the virtual Democratic National Convention. ‘No interest in treating the presidency as anything but one more reality show that he can use to get the attention he craves.’
President Trump responded he was standing in the White House because of Obama and, if the former president had done a better job, he wouldn’t have run.
‘President Obama did not do a good job. And the reason I’m here is because of President Obama and Joe Biden, because if they did a good job, I wouldn’t be here,’ he said at his Wednesday evening press conference when asked about Obama’s remarks.
‘Probably if they did a good job I wouldn’t have even run. I would have been very happy. I enjoyed my previous life very much, but they did such a bad job that I stand before you as president,’ he added.
Obama will recall the time he spent with both men who will be on the ballot this November.
‘I have sat in the Oval Office with both of the men who are running for president,’ Obama will say.
He will admit that he never believed Trump would continue Obama-era policies.
‘I did hope, for the sake of our country, that Donald Trump might show some interest in taking the job seriously; that he might come to feel the weight of the office and discover some reverence for the democracy that had been placed in his care,’ Obama plans to say.
‘But he never did,’ the remarks continue.
Like his wife said on Monday night, Obama will argue that Trump is incapable of handling the presidency.
‘Donald Trump hasn’t grown into the job because he can’t,’ Obama plans to say.
‘And the consequences of that failure are severe. 170,000 Americans dead. Millions of jobs gone. Our worst impulses unleashed, our proud reputation around the world badly diminished, and our democratic institutions threatened like never before,’ he goes on.
Obama will cast Biden as a good man and a strong leader.
‘Twelve years ago, when I began my search for a vice president, I didn’t know I’d end up finding a brother,’ Obama will say. ‘Joe and I came from different places and different generations. But what I quickly came to admire about him is his resilience, born of too much struggle; his empathy, born of too much grief.’
The former president will talk about how Biden treats every person he meets ‘with respect and dignity.’
The point has been made throughout the week at the virtual DNC featuring Biden, in one video, and his decade-long friendships with Amtrak employees.
‘Over eight years, Joe was the last one in the room whenever I faced a big decision. He made me a better president. He’s got the character and the experience to make us a better country,’ Obama will say.
Biden officially earned his party’s nomination during a virtual roll call vote Tuesday night.
The city and venue are significant in a number of ways.
The museum is just blocks away from Independence Hall, where the Declaration of Independence was signed, as well as the Liberty Bell.
Philadelphia was where Obama gave one of his most important speeches: when he talked about race when he ran for president in 2008.
Philadelphia was also the site of the Democrats’ convention four years ago.
And Obama appeared alongside Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton and his wife Michelle, on the eve of election night in 2016, at a packed, outdoor rally on the campus of Independence Hall.
The move suggested the Clinton campaign knew Pennsylvania would be important.
It was the state that put President Donald Trump over the line.
Four years later, Biden – a native of Scranton, Pennsylvania – based his campaign in Philadelphia, which is just one Amtrak stop away from his adopted hometown of Wilmington, Delaware.
His kick-off speech was delivered in Philadelphia’s downtown.
And Biden’s wife, Jill, is from the city.
After Obama speaks Wednesday night, Sen. Kamala Harris will accept the vice presidential nomination live from Wilmington, to be followed by Biden at the same venue on Thursday night.