President Obama Vows to Work for ‘Successful Transition’ of Power Following Trump’s Win

Barack Obama speech Trump win
AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais

Moments 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.

Earlier Wednesday, 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.

“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.”

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.”

Obama joked a bit at the end, saying that he too lost elections before, but Biden hadn’t (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.”