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‘Stop whining,’ Obama tells Trump

  • President Barack Obama answers a question during a joint news conference with Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2016. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

WASHINGTON » “Stop whining,” President Barack Obama rebuked Donald Trump today, speaking out as seldom before on next month’s election and chiding the Republican for sowing suspicion about the integrity of America’s presidential vote.

Obama also accused Trump of cozying up to Russia’s Vladimir Putin to a degree “unprecedented in American politics.”

The president said Trump’s intensifying pre-emptive warnings about voter fraud are unheard of in modern politics. The rhetoric is not based on any evidence, Obama said, but is simply aimed at discrediting the outcome before the first votes are counted.

“You start whining before the game is even over?” Obama said at a Rose Garden news conference. “If whenever things are going badly for you and you lose you start blaming somebody else — then you don’t have what it takes to be in this job.”

Campaigning in Colorado, the GOP candidate repeated his assertions about “corrupt” elections but did not respond directly to the president. Trump vowed to “drain the swamp” in Washington, and for the first time promised to push for a constitutional amendment to impose term limits on all members of Congress.

The president’s remarks came as Trump and his Republican allies look for ways to regain momentum after a damaging few weeks in the campaign. Heading into the third and final debate Wednesday night, Trump is trailing in the polls and running out of time for a comeback before Nov. 8.

Obama waded into the race to elect a successor, speaking at the White House where he was hosting his final state visit. Italy’s Prime Minister Matteo Renzi at his side, the president initially said he would pull his punches when it came to politics, respecting the official setting. But when he was asked about Trump’s rhetoric, he hardly held back.

“I would invite Mr. Trump to stop whining and go try to make his case to get votes,” he said.

The GOP candidate has ramped up warnings about potential fraud. That’s drawing criticism not only from Democrats but from his own party, particularly the state and county officials who run local elections, who fear the rhetoric will give losers license to dispute any results.

“They even want to try and rig the election at the polling booth, where so many cities are corrupt and you see that and voter fraud is all too common,” Trump said at a rally in Colorado Springs.

Independent studies and election officials in both parties say they see no evidence that voter fraud — individuals impersonating others to cast ballots — is a widespread problem.

Asked about Trump’s claims today, running mate Mike Pence dodged and suggested Trump’s point actually was about the “overwhelming bias in the national media.”

Pence spoke after touring the burned-out offices of the Republican Party in Hillsborough, North Carolina. The GOP office was firebombed over the weekend in what Pence called an “act of political terrorism.” Trump pointed at Clinton supporters, but Pence did not assign blame. Police are investigating.

Clinton held no public events today while she prepared for the debate. She has her own troubles and is certain to be asked about the latest revelations involving her use of a private email server during her time as secretary of state.

New FBI documents released Monday revived questions about whether she received classified information and whether State Department allies sought to protect her from criticism over the email arrangement.

The FBI notes show a State Department official asked the FBI to lower the classification of a sensitive email found on her server. The email was related to the attack on the U.S. compound in Benghazi, Libya.

The documents revealed discussion of a “quid pro quo” in trying to get the email reclassified, though it’s not clear who first raised the issue. Both State and FBI officials deny any bargaining took place, and the email was not declassified.

Trump called it an “elaborate and deliberate cover-up” and called for the State Department official, Undersecretary for Management Patrick F. Kennedy, to be fired.

The Republican is hoping to turn the conversation away from the allegations of sexual misconduct that partly dominated his last debate against Clinton.

In an interview with Fox News aired today, Melania Trump vouched for her husband and blamed the accusations on political rivals: “They want to damage the presidency of my husband, and it was all planned, it was all organized from the opposition.”

Her comments carried echoes of Clinton’s allegations of a “vast right-wing conspiracy” organized to raise similar allegations against her husband two decades ago. Trump notably tried to revive Bill Clinton’s history by inviting his accusers to the last debate. His guest list for Wednesday’s faceoff in Las Vegas includes Pat Smith, whose son, Sean Smith, was killed in the attack in Benghazi. Smith was a featured speaker at the Republican National Convention, where she delivered an emotional speech blaming Clinton for her son’s death.

As for Russia, Obama accused Trump of showering praise and modeling his policies on Russian President Putin to a degree that is “unprecedented in American politics.”

He said he has been “surprised and troubled” by Republican lawmakers who he said are echoing their presidential nominee’s positions. Trump has praised Putin as a strong leader and criticized Obama and Clinton for Washington’s deteriorating relationship with Moscow.

In an interview Monday, Trump said Russia “can’t stand” either Democrat. He promised a closer relationship with Putin, if elected, starting with a possible meeting before Inauguration Day.

Associated Press writers Jill Colvin in Colorado Springs, Colorado; Michael Biesecker and Eric Tucker in Washington.

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      • IRT CelloDad, you are looking after the fact, after the vote has been cast. Let’s look at voter fraud before the vote is cast. Are there voter fraud before casting a vote? Let’s begin from voter registration. The Presidential vote in 2008 had say 55% of the registered voters cast a ballot. What happens to the 45% who did not vote? Do they get purged? No, the Federal law mandates that the registered voter list must be intact for two consecutive Presidential elections, or must be intact for the 2016 election. If the voter moved, died, convicted of a felony and did not inform the Elections office, they are registered to vote. If 45% represents 75 million voters, isn’t 50 million voters placed in question? Then, look at the “Media”, which is operating as a Super-PAC supporting one Presidential candidate, Ms Hillary, in donations and minutes of air time. Is the “Media” committing Presidential Election fraud?

        • Kuro, wrong. And I hope you choke, every day of the next four years of HRCs administration and the 3-4 new Supreme Court justices. BTW, had the Republican held senate not abdicate their duties, you would have had a Justice, who by most judicial measures. Merrilck Garland, who is rather centrist and favors more central leaning R ideas.

          Now, you are going to get three to four, liberals, hope you enjoy enjoying chewing on that for the rest of your life…..

        • IRT Ike, Huh, we’re discussing voter fraud, and is it really happening. What do you think?

    • The numbers are beyond statistically insignificant,: about 30 convicted cases out of 2 billion voters.

      You are more likely to get hit by lighting or win the lottery, or in your case, obtain a college degree.

      • I am hoping she will not be just as much a joke.

        The world is a far more dangerous place now than it was 8 years ago.
        Our relations with the other great nuclear powers, Russia and China are scary.
        We need someone with whom agreements can be made on the basis of mutual respect.
        I do not think she can do it. I think Trump could.

        The stock market is high because free printed money is being used to speculate.
        Our monetary system has been all but destroyed. When we lose our status as reserve currency, we will no longer be able to get away with it.
        I would not be surprised if a more accurately measured rate of inflation for the past 2 years was about 20%.
        We need someone who understands money, someone who has had to support payrolls and build businesses.
        Hillary lives in a world of fabricated people groupings and political shenanigans. Trump has had to deal with reality.

        Some of her supporters live in a fabricated world where reality is denied, and delusion is proclaimed as truth.
        They can only perpetuate their lives in the darkness by fighting the light.
        Their target is freedom of speech and religion.
        This is not a joke.

  • Hmm, isn’t this the guys who has been whining about:

    1. Problems are all caused by previous administration.
    2. Even though he had both houses of congress, he can’t get anything done because of congress.
    3. He has no choice but to circumvent the constitution because congress won’t do what he wants – hates checks & balances.
    4. Hates cops – especially when they act “stupidly”.
    5-1000. etc. etc. etc.

    • Actually a lot has been done under Obama. Stock market is over 18000 today instead of being under 7000. Jobs are not being lost at thousands a day. Can anyone truly want to go back to republican leadership? Hopefully not!

      • Boots, you need to listen to Trump, everything is going bad in our country, and millions of American voters are in collusion to rig the election in Hillary’s favor, and these millions of voters know on another by name.

        • LKK everything going bad in this country? Open your eyes and look at all the economic figures. Stop relying on Faux News for your info! Trumpsters need to go back to school and improve your reading and comprehension skills.

      • Stock market is artificially high because of the low interest rate which some seem to feel has to be raised. Wait until the interest rates is back to normal. Job numbers are misleading because it counts part time positions.

        • I think it is not just that the interest rates are low, it is that the supply of money has been vastly increased by what is effectively printing money.

          The Treasury issues bonds to borrow money. The Feds buy the bonds, putting a credit in the Treasury’s account. At some point they load up all the bonds at the Fed and drive them back to the Treasury (for free), and it starts again.

          Print it up and spend it, and jobs will get created etc.
          But it also causes inflation, and you need more and more to keep it going.
          It is like the buzz the alcoholic gets from a drink.

          The increase in the stock market is as much a measure of inflation, created by money printing, as it is a sign of a healthy economy.

          It is argued that there is nothing to worry about, no inflation. It depends on what you measure. The metric has been rigged, for example, to not include the purchase of a house. So when housing goes “through the roof” it is not measured.

    • Yea tell him to work on his 55% approval rating (Note Obama’s approval rating is higher than Reagan (51%), GHW Bush (34%, and GW Bush 25% before the conclusion of their terms). Yeah he has some work to do to catch the President since WW2 who had the highest approval rating at the conclusion of his term – Bill Clinton.

  • Obama should not really be making these comments when he has State visitors in Washington. He did this during a recent press hearing where another State visitor was present. Really put the State visitors in an awkward position. Really shows poor host manors.

    • It is hypocritical that Obama would support freedom of speech for clowns that refuse to honor the National Anthem and our flag yet disregard valid allegations towards Hellary and possible cases of voter fraud. Get out already, you’ve had your time in the limelight with golf courses and vacations to our islands.

        • The truly sad reality of your prediction is the certain consequences to follow. Thwarting a particular evil by supporting another is ethical madness.

    • I’m on SSec. The only thing I’ll whine about is the GOP constantly trying to reduce the ss payments or eliminate it completely. Its my money I have a right to complain when someone tries to mess with it.

      • I got news for you. The federal government both D and R has been borrowing money from the SS trust fund for years. The government can’t seem to pay it back. That’s the “someone trying to mess with it” so go ahead and complain away.

  • Pot toking Obama. You support freedom of speech for some clowns that won’t stand and honor the National Anthem and call whiner on another that has valid accusations that may effect the election for Potus?? Your racism has divided America and enraged our enemies internationally. Politically correct corruption at its best.

    • Lets set the record straight. Are you against someone expressing their individual right granted by the Constitution? Everyone has the right to honor or not the flag or National Anthem in their own way. In the past there were pro-nazi groups expressing their party beliefs in public but were not punished because it was their of freedom of expression. So now you’re blaming Obama for not curtailing someone’s Constitutional right?

      • To set the record straight for your comprehension level my tag is because Obama will recognize freedom and/or expression for one and not the other. Hypocritical for a person with the title of POTUS is it not? I have my own opinion of those that will sit and fart to honor the flag and National Anthem so stop whining.

  • Obama is a poor excuse for the President, stepping into the election by using the office to campaign for HilLIARy. What an embarrassment, we live in a sad time of American History to have a president like Obama and the two choices to choose from. But the wisdom of the American voter will come through and not allow corruption to continue by electing a third term of incompetence of Obama by voting for the queen of corruption, HilLIARy Rotten Clinton.

    • Why exactly is Obama a poor excuse for a president? Can you be specific? Perhaps you prefer the stock market to be under 7000 instead of over 18000? Perhaps you would prefer that we be at war with Iran? Haven’t past presidents campaign for candidates to follow?

      • Boots, do you even have a clue as to why the stock market goes up or down? The “rich” have done very well under Obama. They also own most of the stocks.
        Unfortunately, minorities, especially Blacks, have lost ground over the last 8 years, even with thousands being given government jobs. The average family now pays mpre for health care. Recall Obama saying “I pretty much don’t pay attention to the stock market”.

  • There were no deals made between the State Department and the FBI over classification of emails. The FBI did not change the classifications of most, if not all, emails in any case. Trump and Ryan both appear to have seized upon this matter as corruption, but the facts clearly show their position of impropriety is nonsense.

    The bottom line is that the country is clearly divided and the pain is real. We need to take realistic and attainable steps to address those people who are hurting and help this country heal. Imho, this election has brought an awareness of the pain and angst and that is actually a good thing. Now those who are elected by the people, can show that they will work for the people.

    “Government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the Earth.” – Abraham Lincoln

    • And working for the people does not mean fueling hate and bigotry and worst of all, using these people who want change to get himself elected by any means including outright lies. To be fair, both candidates are the least popular to ever run for POTUS.

      But let’s hope that people still have enough common sense to know what makes sense.

  • When one has hold one of the most prestigious job in the world and in a few weeks will revert to one of the crowd of Americans, it hurts seeing the writing on the wall. The more expositions and speeches are the norm for all past holders of the presidency. It’s their last hurrah to placate becoming just one of us! Human nature since the dawn of time!

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