WASHINGTON, U.S. - In one of the most anticipated meetings of recent times - America’s president-elect, Donald Trump met President Barack Obama at the Oval Office for the first of many ...
• Obama is a very good man, says Trump
• Obama to ensure smooth transition for Trump
• Trump to seek counsel from Obama
WASHINGTON, U.S. - In one of the most anticipated meetings of recent times - America’s president-elect, Donald Trump met President Barack Obama at the Oval Office for the first of many traditional power transition talks.
Both Obama, batting for Hillary Clinton and Trump speaking at his campaign rallies have unleashed a barrage of insults and accusations at each other throughout the two years of campaigning for the Presidential election that ended on Wednesday with America voting in Trump as the 45th President of the United States.
From calling Obama the founder of the Islamic State militant group (ISIS), to make the highly controversial birther claim that haunted his campaign for months - Trump has made many outrageous statements against Obama.
On the other hand, Obama has indicated several times that Trump might not be fit for being the President.
Political analysts from across the country, who’ve been maintaining a hawk eye watch on every move made by the president-elect ever since he was declared the winner - were watching this meeting closely too.
The meeting that was expected to last 15 minutes, went on well beyond 90 minutes and ended with a photo-opportunity for the media, along with a brief statement by both, Obama and Trump.
Addressing the media at the end of the talk, Obama said, “We talked about some of the organisational issues in setting up the White House. We talked about foreign policy. We talked about domestic policy. As I said last night, my number one priority in the coming two months is to try to facilitate a transition that ensures our president-elect is successful. And I have been very encouraged by the interest in President-elect Trump’s wanting to work with my team around many of the issues that this great country faces. And I believe that it is important for all regardless of party and regardless of political preferences to now come together, work together to deal with the many challenges we face.”
Obama further said that he was "encouraged" by their "excellent" and "wide-ranging" conversation.
Trump on the other hand, looking humbled at the end of their discussion said that Obama was a “very good man” and that it was a "great honour" to meet him.
Trump said this was the first time he was meeting Obama and that they had spoken about “a lot of different situations, some wonderful and some difficult.”
He further added, in a sombre tone that he would "very much look forward" to dealing with President Obama in the future and would also seek his counsel.
Obama also pledged his administration’s full cooperation to ensure Trump’s transition is smooth.
He had previously recalled his close working relationship with George W Bush during the transition period.
During Obama’s first term, Trump claimed that Obama was not born in America and thus was widely criticised by people for his ‘birther’ claim. He also criticised Obama administration for its foreign and domestic policies, Obama care’s failure amongst others. Even Obama, long claimed that Trump was unstable and should never be allowed near nuclear codes.
"They had so little confidence in his self-control, they said, 'We are just going to take away your Twitter.' Now, if somebody can't handle a Twitter account, they can't handle the nuclear codes," Obama had said at a rally for Clinton in Florida just a day before the election.
Trump will be sworn in on January 20, 2017 in the inauguration to begin his presidency.
Meanwhile, as the Trump team begins to have an understanding of the process at the White House, the current team at the place has already started transferring a huge amount of information to the National Archives and Records Administration. The White House communications director Jennifer Psaki said that the president had a meeting with his staff about putting institutional interests ahead of political ones.
“He reflects a lot about the cog in the wheel that you are as president. He was taking the baton, he’s handing it off. But I think it’s a recognition that it’s bigger than individual aspirations and it’s bigger than yourself, and bigger than anything that you’ve accomplished. Because we as a country need to be stable, need to have continuity,” she added.
The White House said on Thursday that Obama has convened a coordinating council to facilitate a smooth transition, including providing briefings from federal agencies to Trump's transition team, headed by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.
The White House team will also help the landing team to speed up things before they take charge designated by Trump after January 20. The new team will be handed over vital information via iPads, cloud-based systems and internal website. Trump will also gain access to a personal tracking interface to handle the documents and data involved in hiring 4,000 political appointees in a short span of time.