Former U.S. president Barack Obama took a shot at the White House during a speech on Friday, saying the idea that senior Trump administration staff are secretly working to undermine the president, is not how “our democracy is supposed to work.”
Without directly saying it, Obama was making reference to the anonymous New York Times op-ed that was published this week, in which the mystery author writes about the resistance of staffers plotting against U.S. President Donald Trump in order to stop his “worst inclinations.”
Speaking to a crowd at the University of Illinois, Obama took aim at the article.
“The claim that everything will turn out okay because there are people inside the White House who secretly aren’t following the president’s orders, that is not a check,” Obama said.
“I’m being serious here. That’s not how our democracy is supposed to work. These people aren’t elected. They’re not accountable.”
He added that they are not “doing us a service by actively promoting 90 per cent of the crazy stuff that’s coming out of this White House, and then saying, ‘Don’t worry, we’re preventing the other 10 per cent.'”
WATCH: Obama unleashes on Republican party ahead of midterm elections
Obama said “this is not normal,” adding the U.S. is living in dangerous times.
Since leaving office Obama has mainly stayed out of politics, but the rare attack on the Trump administration comes months before the U.S. mid-term elections. He also unleashed on Trump’s border wall, lack of emergency response after Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico and immigration laws.
“What happened to the Republican party?” Obama asked.
He then encouraged Americans to get out to the voting booth for November’s mid-term elections.
“Just a glance at recent headlines should tell you this moment really is different,” Obama said. “The stakes really are higher. The consequences of any of us sitting on the sidelines are more dire.”