Former president Barack Obama has criticized the Trump administration’s coronavirus response and the Justice Department’s decision to drop charges against former national security advisor Michael Flynn. President Donald Trump and other Republican officials seem to be angered in response, according to The Hill.
Last week, Obama spoke about the two matters during a private meeting with around 3,000 Obama Alumni Association members. News organizations later leaked the information.
- Obama described the White House’s efforts in combating the pandemic as an “absolute chaotic disaster.”
- The former president also remarked on the dropped charges against Flynn, saying that “there is no precedent that anybody can find for someone who has been charged with perjury just getting off scot-free. That’s the kind of stuff where you begin to get worried that basic — not just institutional norms — but our basic understanding of rule of law is at risk.”
Republican officials have responded to Obama’s comments, especially vehemently towards his view on the dropped case on Flynn.
- Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell described Obama’s remarks as “classless,” and said, “I think President Obama should have kept his mouth shut. You know, we know he doesn’t like much this administration is doing. That’s understandable. But I think it’s a little bit classless frankly to critique an administration that comes after you.”
- Sen. Mike Braun (R-IN) added that “I don’t think he (Obama) has much to say because there wasn’t much put in place.”
In reaction to Obama’s criticism of the Justice Department’s decision, Braun used the term “Obamagate” invented by Trump in counter-attack.
I think that what I’m more interested in is all the news that came out about Obamagate. ... I think he’s going to be thrown into the conversation,” Braun said when asked about Obama’s comments on the coronavirus.
Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) said:
Contrary to what President Obama believes or the media might say, I believe the opposite is true.
The Justice Department announced last week that the case against Flynn will be dropped and said that it believed the FBI investigation into Russia’s election interference had been conducted improperly.