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Josh Earnest: If Trump Crosses Obama’s Red Lines, Barack Will Attack

Josh Earnest: If Trump Crosses Obama’s Red Lines, Barack Will Attack

Washington Free Beacon: Former White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said Monday that there were some “clear red lines” that would cause former President Obama to speak out publicly against federal action.

In an interview, MSNBC’s Chris Jansing asked Earnest about the former president’s promise to weigh in publicly if he senses a threat to America’s “core values.” Obama spoke out in support of protests of President Trump’s controversial temporary immigration ban proposal at the end of January.

“What do you think,” Jansing asked Earnest, “would motivate him to get back involved in the public debate in a way that he’s not willing to do right now?”

Earnest made clear that Obama would not be interested in responding to every little thing.

“After the last eight years, the president doesn’t relish the prospect of getting back into the day-to-day fights that characterize governing the United States of America in the 21st century,” Earnest said. “He spent the last eight years doing it, it’s somebody else’s turn to do that now.”

“What would motivate President Obama to reengage in the political debate,” Earnest continued, “is if we saw the federal government start to cross some clear red lines in terms of long-observed norms and values that frankly I think that we started to take for granted.”

Earnest’s use of the term “red lines” was noteworthy given Obama’s infamous history with the phrase. Obama pledged in 2012 that Syria using chemical weapons would cross a “red line” with him, but he backed off taking unilateral military action when the Assad regime did so in 2013. Keep reading...

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