Politics 2016: President Obama Calls for Unity, Peaceful Transition

After Hillary Clinton gave her concession speech, President Barack Obama addressed the American public from the White House Rose Garden, joined by Vice President Joe Biden.

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Obama said he congratulated President-elect Donald Trump and invited him for a meeting on Thursday.

Like Clinton, Obama reiterated the need for a peaceful transition of power in the coming weeks.

Hillary Clinton concession speech

Effective and peaceful transition

“It is no secret that the President-elect and I had some pretty significant differences,” Obama said. “I have instructed my team to follow the example that President Bush’s team set eight years ago and work as hard as we can to make sure this is a successful transition for the President-elect.”

“We are all rooting for his success in uniting and leading the country,” he continued.

“I could not be prouder for her,” Obama said of Clinton. “Her candidacy and nomination was historic, and sent a message to our daughters all across the country that they can achieve at the highest levels of politics.”

Call for Unity

President Obama then called for unity. “We all want what’s best for the country. A sense of unity. A sense of inclusion. A respect for our institutions, our way of life, rule of law, and respect for each other. I hope Trump maintains that spirit throughout this transition. I certainly hope that’s how his presidency has a chance to begin.”

“This was a long and hard-fought campaign,” Obama stated, before echoing Clinton’s concession speech. “Fighting for what is right is worth it.”

Donald Trump Victory Speech

Obama joked a bit at the end, saying that he too lost elections before, but Biden hadn’t, but Biden quickly reminded the President he defeated him.

In his final statement, he compared the presidency to being a relay race where the baton is passed between runners. “I  want to make sure that hand-off is well-executed as we’re all on the same team.”