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Aaron Rupar @atrupar
, 23 tweets, 9 min read Read on Twitter
Obama is delivering a speech at the University of Illinois. Follow me for a video thread.
Obama begins by cracking some good-natured jokes. Can you imagine Trump doing this?
OBAMA: "And as a fellow citizen, not as an ex-president, but as a fellow
citizen, I'm here to deliver a simple message, and that is that you need to vote because our democracy depends on it... a glance at recent headlines should tell you that this moment really is different."
OBAMA: "There's always been a darker aspect to America's story. Progress doesn't move in a straight line. There's a reason why progress hasn't been easy & why 2 steps forward sometimes produces a step back... each time we've gotten closer to our ideals, somebody has pushed back."
Obama mentions Trump by name!

"He's just capitalizing on resentments that politicians have been fanning for years, a fear and anger that's rooted in our past but it's also born out of the enormous upheavals that have taken place in your brief lifetimes."
OBAMA: "When I came into office we were losing 800k jobs a month. Millions of people were losing homes... By the time I left, household income was near its high, uninsured rates hit an all-time low. So when you hear how great the economy is, let's just remember where it started."
OBAMA on TRUMP: "Appealing to tribe, appealing to fear, pitting one group against another, telling people order & security will be restored if it weren't for those who don't look like us... that's an old playbook. It's as old as time. And in a healthy democracy, it doesn't work."
OBAMA: "The politics of division and resentment and paranoia has unfortunately found a home in the Republican Party... this Congress has championed unwinding of campaign laws. Systematically attacked voting rights. Embraced conspiracy theories about my birth certificate."
OBAMA GOES IN ON THE GOP: "With Republicans in control of Congress & WH, without any checks, they've provided another $1.5t in tax cuts to people like me who I promise don't need it -- & don't even pretend to pay for them. It's supposed to be the party of fiscal conservatism!"
OBAMA on the GOP: "They're undermining our alliances, cozying up to Russia. What happened to the GOP? Its central organizing principle was anti-communism, & now they're cozying up to former head of the KGB, blocking legislation that would defend our elections... what happened!?"
OBAMA weighs in on NYT op-ed: "The claim that everything will turn out OK because there are people inside WH who secretly aren't following POTUS' orders, that's not a check. I'm being serious. That's not how our democracy's supposed to work. They aren't elected. Not accountable."
OBAMA: "It should not be a partisan issue to say that we do not pressure the AG or the FBI to use the criminal justice system as a cudgel to punish our political opponents, or to explicitly call on the AG to protect members of our own party from prosecution...not a hypothetical!"
OBAMA: "We are Americans. We're supposed to stand up to bullies. Not follow them. We're supposed to stand up to discrimination, and we're sure as heck supposed to stand up clearly and unequivocally to Nazi sympathizers... how hard can that be, to say that Nazis are bad?!"
OBAMA: "Some think we have to fight fire with fire. We have to do same things to Republicans that they do to us. Make up stuff...I don't agree with that...that only works for those who don't believe in the power of collective action, who are only concerned about staying in power"
Trump criticizes "the definition of civility offered by too many congressional Republicans right now."

"We'll be polite so long as we get 100% of what we want & you don't call us out on various ways we're sticking it to ppl. That's not civility. That's abdicating responsibility"
OBAMA: "Do not let people tell you the fight's not worth it bc you won't get everything that you want. The idea that, 'well, you know, there's racism in America, so I'm not going to bother voting' -- makes no sense! You can make it better. Better is always worth fighting for."
OBAMA: "I know there are conservatives who think there's nothing compassionate abt separating immigrant families. There are Republicans who believe govt should perform a few functions, but one them should be making sure nearly 3k Americans dont die in a hurricane & its aftermath"
OBAMA: "To say that common ground exists doesn't mean it will inevitably win out. History shows the power of fear, & the closer we get to to election day, the more those invested in the politics of fear will do anything to hang on to their recent gains... [but] I am hopeful."
OBAMA: "The antidote to a government controlled by a powerful few, a government that divides, is a government by the organized -- energized, inclusive, many. That's what this moment's about. That has to be the answer. You cannot sit back and wait for a savior."
OBAMA: "In the end, the threat to our democracy doesn't just come from Donald Trump or the current batch of Republicans in Congress or too much compromise from Democrats or Russian hacking. The biggest threat to our democracy is indifference. The biggest threat is cynicism."
OBAMA: "In the last midterm elections in '14, fewer than 1 in 5 young people voted. 1 in 5! Not 2 or 3... Is it any wonder this Congress doesn't reflect your values & priorities? Are you surprised by that? The whole project of self-govt only works if everybody does their part."
OBAMA: "If you're tired of politicians who offer nothing but thoughts & prayers after a mass shooting, you've got to do what Parkland kids are doing. Some of them aren't even eligible to vote yet. They're out there working to change minds & registering people...you gotta vote!"
OBAMA closes his remarkable speech with this: "We have been through much darker times than these, & somehow each generation of Americans carried us through to the other side. Not by sitting around & waiting, but by leading that movement for change themselves...I believe in you."
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