by WorldTribune Staff, February 1, 2017
Former President Barack Obama’s failure to act more quickly on alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 election ultimately cost Hillary Clinton the presidency, some Clinton backers are now saying.
“Clintonites feel that if Obama had come out early and forcefully with evidence of Russian interference in the campaign, and perhaps quicker sanctions, she might be president today,” Axios reported on Jan.31.
Obama’s caution, the Clinton supporters argue, “allowed the public to have a foggy sense of clear, calculated, consistent Russian meddling in the campaign.”
White House officials said Obama did not play up the alleged Russian interference because he did not want to be accused of politicizing the alleged hacking.
In his year-end news conferences, Obama said: “I know that there are folks out there who suggested that somehow if we went out there and made big announcements and thumped our chests about a bunch of stuff, that somehow that would potentially spook the Russians … [T]he idea that somehow public shaming is going to be effective, I think doesn’t read the thought process in Russia very well.”
The feud between the Clinton and Obama camps is “making efforts to form a new Trump opposition coalition harder,” the Axios report said.
One Clinton campaign official told Axios: “The White House was like everyone else: They thought she’d win anyway. … If he had done more, it might have lessened a lot of aggrieved feelings, although I don’t think it would have altered the outcome. The Russia thing was like a spy novel, and anything he had said or done would have helped get people to believe it was real.”
Obama is said to have told Democratic Party operatives that he was shocked by Clinton’s loss given his level of popularity on Election Day. He believes he gave Clinton an “easy layup” and she missed it.