The President has seen the enemy, and it is us. And by us, I really mean us. RedState.
In an interview with The New Yorker, President Obama talks about the upcoming Trump presidency and reflects on his own rise to the highest office in the land. It’s an expansive interview that’s worth reading. Especially my favorite part:
In 2004, Obama won a seat in the U.S. Senate, defeating in the primary a sitting state comptroller and white Party regular named Dan Hynes, who had had the support of nearly every county chairman in the state.
“People didn’t see me coming,” Obama said as we drove through the night. “In southern Illinois, in those counties I won, I was at V.F.W.s and fish fries hearing people’s stories and talking to folks, so that they knew me. They weren’t getting me through Fox or Rush Limbaugh or Breitbart or RedState.
I’d like to thank the Academy and, of course, Leif Erickson …
Seriously, that’s a good name check. Unlike Hillary Clinton, I don’t really think Obama sees people like Rush Limbaugh or RedState as “the enemy.” Nor is he ours. We are opponents. We differ. Sometimes vehemently, sometimes even viciously, for better or for worse. But, as President Obama and President-elect Trump have both pointed out in the days since election, we are in fact, all Americans here. Our disputes are because of that, because we have visions for what America should be. What America could be. When they conflict, there is … well, conflict.
That’s a feature, not a bug. He believes that, I think, and so do we.
President-elect Trump, as well as his surrogates and supporters, have said a lot recently about bringing the nation back together. This is something politicians always say after an election, and as cynics we often interpret that to mean “now you have to get on my page.” To an extent, that’s true. But it doesn’t have to be the whole story.
I’m glad President Obama knows RedState. I hope he reads our articles from time to time and thinks to himself “you know, they’re not so bad.” Just as we’ve thought that of him.
(And the rest of the time I hope he thinks “oh man, I’ve been wrong all along. THIS is what I should have done.” It’s about changing hearts and minds, you guys.)
When Donald Trump takes that oath, he will be President. He’ll be a servant of the people, and responsible for his decisions and, as we do all politicians, we’ll hold him to account. Sometimes vehemently, sometimes even viciously. For better, not for worse, I hope.
But I will dispute one thing President Obama says. People do read about him here at RedState. Just probably not the things he’d prefer they read. Hey, that’s the nature of opposition.
The entire article is worth a read. There’s plenty to piss you off, not least from the writer himself, but that’s the other thing about opposition: Know your opponent. Ignorance is neither a weapon nor a defense.
And if you are not prepared for unity, or coming together, or to say “farewell, Mr. President we wish you well” or “welcome, President Trump, we wish you well also,” then at least take one thing away from this article: he name-checked RedState. We’re cool now.