President Barack Obama accused Republicans Friday of engaging in violence similar to that employed by anti-Trump rioters in San Jose, California, Thursday night.
President Obama, talking to individuals at a Democratic National Committee fundraising event in Miami, said, “It is very important for us to remind ourselves of who we are and what is best about American democracy and not slip into some of the bad habits that currently manifest themselves in the other party.”
He explained, “We saw in San Jose these protesters starting to pelt stuff on Trump supporters. That’s not what our democracy is about. That’s not what you do. There’s no room for violence. There’s no place for shouting. There’s no room for a politics that fails to at least listen to the other side – even if you vehemently disagree. Because I believe if you’ve got the better argument, then you don’t need to do that. Just go out there and organize and persuade.”
Obama, never mentioning Donald Trump, then said, “I want our democracy to work in such a way that eventually — and I’ve been waiting a while now – and eventually the Republican fever breaks and they become once again a sensible center-right party that can have a coherent policy debate with us and we can actually get some stuff done. But that doesn’t happen if we start digging into absolutist positions and aren’t willing to compromise and are resorting to some of the same kinds of tactics they’ve been engaging in for quite some time.”
After the president, who praised embattled DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, wrapped up his speech, reporters overheard him say, “I’m out of practice, I haven’t campaigned in a while,” he said, when asking for some tea to keep him hydrated.