Obama chimes in - What's Your Point?

This week's What's Your Point? panel, joining Greg Groogan in the discussion: Rick Walker - former Republican Congressional Candidate, Nyanza Moore -  progressive commentator and attorney, Bob Price- Associate Editor Breitbart Texas, Craig Jackson - Professor, Thurgood Marshall School of Law, Bill King- businessman, columnist and former Kemah mayor, Tony-Diaz - educator and Chicano activist.


URBANA, Ill. (AP) - Friday, September 7 on former President Barack Obama (Central Time)

7 p.m.

Former President Barack Obama has issued a scorching critique of his successor, accusing President Donald Trump of "capitalizing on resentments that politicians have been fanning for years."

Obama spoke at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign less than two months before midterm elections that could determine the course of Trump's presidency. The remarks amounted to a stinging indictment of political life in the Trump era.

Obama says, "Telling people that order and security will be restored if it weren't for those who don't look like us or don't sound like us or don't pray like we do - that's an old playbook."

He is calling on "people of good will from across the political spectrum" to "call out the bigots and the fear-mongers."


2:45 p.m.

President Donald Trump claims he fell asleep watching former President Barack Obama's speech about the current political climate.

Trump says: "I'm sorry, I watched it, but I fell asleep." He adds, "I found he's very good for sleeping."

Obama criticized Trump during a speech Friday in Illinois, calling the current president "the symptom, not the cause" of division and polarization in the U.S.

Trump responded during a campaign appearance in North Dakota, saying that Obama was trying to take credit for this "incredible thing that's happening to our country."

Trump went to talk about economic gains since he took office.


12:20 p.m.

Former President Barack Obama has urged an audience of college students to not just vote in the midterm elections, but to lead the fight against President Donald Trump and his allies.

Obama said during a speech Friday at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign that "you cannot sit back and wait for a savior." He said the biggest threat to democracy isn't Trump but "indifference."

The speech was a preview of the arguments Obama is expected to make as he starts campaigning for Democrats on the ballot this fall. He said people have asked him what he's going to do for the November election. Obama told the students: "The question is: 'What are you going to do?'"

Obama said: "If you thought elections don't matter, I hope these past two years have corrected that impression."


12:15 p.m.

Former President Barack Obama says the U.S. needs to restore "honesty and decency" in government.

Obama says, "It should not be a partisan issue to say that we do not pressure the attorney general or the FBI to use the criminal justice system as a cudgel to punish our political opponents, or to explicitly call on the attorney general to protect members of our own party from prosecution because an election happens to be coming up."

He says, "I'm not making that up. That's not hypothetical."

President Donald Trump this week criticized the attorney general for prosecuting two Republican congressmen, saying it will hurt the party in the November elections.

Obama delivered a speech Friday at the University of Illinois that included several broadsides at Trump while rarely mentioning his name.

He said Americans and politicians of both parties should stand up against discrimination and "stand up clearly and unequivocally to Nazi sympathizers." Obama said: "How hard can that be? Saying that Nazis are bad?"


11:50 a.m.

Former President Barack Obama is blasting Republicans, saying "the politics of division and resentment and paranoia has unfortunately found a home in the Republican Party."

Obama says during a speech Friday in Illinois that the Republican-controlled Congress has championed the unwinding of campaign finance laws, made it harder for minorities to vote and voted multiple times to take health care away from ordinary Americans. He also says the GOP has "cozied up" to the former head of the KGB, a reference to Russian President Vladimir Putin, and is calling out lawmakers for not standing up to President Donald Trump.

Obama says "What happened to the Republican Party?"

Obama is speaking at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, where he's urging people to vote in the midterm elections.


11:35 a.m.

Former President Barack Obama says President Donald Trump is "a symptom, not a cause" of what's dividing the country.

Obama says during a speech Friday at the University of Illinois that Trump is capitalizing on the same resentments, fear and anger that politicians have fanned for years. He's says it's the result of a rapidly changing world and growing inequality and that politicians who appeal to that fear are using "an old playbook."

Obama is receiving an award for ethics in government at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Obama is hitting the campaign trail for his fellow Democrats, with an event in California for House candidates and then a stop in Ohio next week.


11:20 a.m.

Former President Barack Obama is calling on people to vote in the November election, saying "our democracy depends on it."

Obama is speaking Friday at the University of Illinois, where he's receiving an award for ethics in government. He says the country is at a pivotal moment in its history and "the consequences of any of us sitting on the sidelines are more dire" than in prior elections.

The speech is Obama's first big step into the campaign for the midterm elections. His advisers say it's a preview of the case he'll make throughout the fall campaign season.

After spending much of his post-presidency on the political sidelines, Obama has several events scheduled in coming days where he'll campaign for Democrats. He'll next travel to California for an event with seven House candidates in Orange County. Next week he'll be in Ohio to campaign for Richard Cordray and other Democrats.


9:50 a.m.

Former President Barack Obama is stepping into the midterm battle. Obama is set to speak Friday as he accepts an ethics in government award in Illinois.

Obama has spent much of his post-presidency on the political sidelines, but an adviser says that in the speech he will be more "pointed" in his reflection on the current political environment, including President Donald Trump. The speech will be a preview of the argument Obama will make this fall campaign season.

After the speech, Obama will travel to California and campaign for more than a half-dozen House Democratic candidates at an event in Orange County. Next week, he'll return to the campaign trail in Ohio to campaign for Richard Cordray and other Democrats.