Trump and Obama Battle Over the Economy 💪

 Jim Watson / AFP / Getty Images

Jim Watson / AFP / Getty Images

Alternative economies

Former President Obama addressed the state of the economy in a recent speech at the University of Illinois, drawing backlash from President Trump. Obama said: "When you hear how great the economy's doing right now, let's just remember when this recovery started.” Trump responded, saying that Obama “was trying to take credit for this incredible thing that’s happening to our country.”

The precedent of presidential silence

Since George Washington’s tenure, it has been the practice of outgoing presidents to refrain from criticizing their successors. Past presidents have criticized each other, but rarely. This is not the first time Obama has spoken out against Trump, but it is the first time he has publicly denounced the president by name, calling him a “symptom, not the cause” of our current “dark” times.


LEANING LEFT:

Buzzfeed: Obama Blasted Trump For "The Crazy Stuff That's Coming Out Of This White House" And Not Denouncing Nazis

CNN: Obama Slams Republicans: Trump is ‘Capitalizing on Resentment’

The left is celebrating Obama’s re-entry into politics after what they consider to be an appropriate period of silence. Analysis largely agrees that in these “extraordinary times,” it was Obama’s obligation to speak out. Most also support his economic claims by citing data showing the trend of economic expansion with origins in his first term in office.

LEANING RIGHT:

Fox News: Trump Fires Back at Obama, Boasts He’s Got ‘Magic Wand’ On Economy

Breitbart: Bitter Barack Obama Breaks Months of Silence to Trash Donald Trump

The right is less impressed with Obama’s appearance, characterizing it as disrespectful and aggressive. They cite the presidential precedent of silence and argue Obama has disregarded a critical American tradition. Furthermore, conservative analyses support Trump’s claim that his administration deserves the credit for recent economic growth, referencing his tax cuts and moves toward deregulation.


Just words? 😪

Headlines on both sides have emphasized Obama’s choice to speak against Trump as a break with tradition — for better or worse. They use belligerent language to describe the presidents’ exchanges, which exaggerates the sense of politics as a battleground. Beyond the rhetoric, both sides acknowledge the added pressure of the midterm elections and the challenge of ‘getting out the vote.’

Obama’s take on the economy. Agree?

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