President-Elect Donald Trump has accused outgoing President Barack Obama of making “many inflammatory statements and roadblocks” during the transition to his administration. Trump used a series of tweets on Wednesday to slam President Obama, whom he has had a frosty relationship with for many years, tweeting “Doing my best to disregard the many inflammatory President O statements and roadblocks. Thought it was going to be a smooth transition – NOT!”
According to the Independent, the tweets mark a shift in Mr Trump’s post-election approach to the incumbent president. Since beating President Obama’s former secretary of state in the 2016 presidential election, Mr. Trump has largely praised his predecessor. That being said, the President-elect’s comments are thought to have been spurred by a suggestion from the president that he would have beaten Donald Trump if he had been eligible to run for a third term in the 2016 presidential election.
Expectedly, Mr. Trump didn’t respond in kind to the comments. In that same Twitter tirade, Trump criticised the Obama administration’s current handling of Israel after the passing of a UN Security Council resolution that rebuked it over its building of Jewish settlements in Palestinian territories
Traditionally, the United States has always used its veto power to block any attempt to condemn Israel. However, in the final months of his presidency, the Obama administration appears to be breaking with tradition, by criticising Benjamin Netanyahu’s government and failing to intervene on its behalf. Comparingly, the incoming Trump administration has pledged support for Israel, suggesting that Mr. Obama’s move to weaken ties with the country are also designed to undermine the incoming Trump administration.
Mr. Trump joined Mr Netanyahu in criticising the decision by the Obama administration. According to CNN Politics, Mr. Trump immediately promised that things will be different when he takes office in January, saying “We cannot continue to let Israel be treated with such total disdain and disrespect. They used to have a great friend in the US. But not anymore. The beginning of the end was the horrible Iran deal, and now this (UN)! Stay strong Israel, January 20th is fast approaching.”
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The President-elect wasn’t entirely critical of the outgoing president, however. Later on in the day, whilst speaking to reporters in Florida, Mr. Trump appeared to walk back his comments, saying the transition is going “very, very smoothly” and confirming that he had a “nice conversation” with Obama. With that in mind, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to gauge the temperature of the relationship between incoming President-Elect Donald Trump and his predecessor, outgoing President Barack Obama.
As aforementioned, Mr. Trump and Mr. Obama have enjoyed something of a frosty relationship for many years. Ahead of Obama’s re-election effort in 2011, Mr. Trump lead the so-called “Birther movement,” falsely asserting that he was not a natural-born citizen of the United States and consequently, under Article Two of the U.S. Constitution, that he was ineligible to be President of the United States. The movement lead many to believe that Trump has then planning to run against the president in the 2012 election.
Trump, ultimately did not. However, when he went head to head with Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election, Mr. Obama avidly criticised Mr. Trump whilst campaigning for Mrs. Clinton. Their relationship expectedly became more frosty as a result, however, the pair appeared to mend bridges when Mr. Trump beat Mrs. Clinton last month.
[Featured Image by Win McNamee/Getty Images]