CBS, NBC Celebrate Obama’s First Public Appearance Since Inauguration

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Former President Barack Obama made his first public appearance at the University of Chicago on Monday, where the liberal media championed his return. “Meantime tonight, we're hearing from former President Obama speaking out in his first public event since leaving office, jumping back into the spotlight and a lot of attention focused on what he would say about his successor, President Trump,” hyped Anchor Lester Holt during NBC Nightly News.

Hillary Clinton super-fan, Andrea Mitchell glorified his return but seemed disheartened that Obama had chosen not to attack President Trump. “Today former President Obama breaking his public silence for the first time since leaving the White House,” he reported. “Back in Chicago, signaling he will not lead the resistance against Donald Trump.

According to Mitchell, Obama’s aides told her that he was “deliberately not mentioning Trump.” “Ignoring the President's explosive Twitter accusation that Obama wiretapped him, and his other slams,” she explained. As an example of one of Trump’s “other slams,” Mitchell played a clip of the current President saying “I inherited a mess.” That’s the same criticism Obama leveled at his predecessor for eight long years and the media didn’t have a problem with it then.

Mitchell also hyped the A-lister lifestyle the Obamas had been living since January 20. “Spending the past months kite surfing with Richard Branson, vacationing on music mogul David Geffen’s luxurious yacht in Tahiti. Michelle Obama’s tweeter feed: pure romance no politics,” she touted.

“Former aides say that Mr. Obama wants to avoid criticizing President Trump, the way George W. Bush refused to criticize him,” she seemed to whine. “Even though that is frustrating some democratic activists.

On CBS Evening News, Anchor Scott Pelley couldn’t be happier to see Obama. “Today man who never lost a presidential election made his first major appearance since leaving office,” he began the segment by saying.

Reporter Dean Reynold was impressed by how “Mr. Obama appeared cool and at ease to a degree only a former president can appreciate.” He also praised how:

There was no mention of Donald Trump, no response to the frantic attempts to erase the Obama legacy or the evidence-free charges that he tapped Mr. Trump's phones. Instead, after several months vacationing and decompressing with friends, Mr. Obama chose a forum with budding political activists to recall his days here as a community organizer.

In closing out his report, Reynolds advertised the former President’s next public engagement. “Mr. Obama's next public appearance, Scott, will be May 7th in Boston where he will accept the Kennedy Library's Profiles in Courage Award,” he noted.

Transcripts below:

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NBC Nightly News
April 24, 2017
7:03:52 PM Eastern

LESTER HOLT: Meantime tonight, we're hearing from former President Obama speaking out in his first public event since leaving office, jumping back into the spotlight and a lot of attention focused on what he would say about his successor, President Trump. NBC's Andrea Mitchell has details.

[Cuts to video]

ANDREA MITCHELL: Today former President Obama breaking his public silence for the first time since leaving the White House.

BARACK OBAMA: What's been going on since I've been gone?

MITCHELL: Back in Chicago signaling he will not lead the resistance against Donald Trump.

OBAMA: The single most important thing I can do is to help in any way I can prepare the next generation of leadership.

MITCHELL: In fact, aides say deliberately not mentioning Trump, ignoring the President's explosive Twitter accusation that Obama wiretapped him, and his other slams.

DONALD TRUMP: I inherited a mess.

MITCHELL: Why not fight back?

JOSH EARNEST: While he certainly doesn't agree with a large number of the decisions that have been made, this is the outcome of the election.

MITCHELL: When they left Washington, the Obamas said they would be dropping out for a while.

MICHELLE OBAMA: First, we're going to take a little break.

MITCHELL: Spending the past months kite surfing with Richard Branson, vacationing on music mogul David Geffen’s luxurious yacht in Tahiti. Michelle Obama’s tweeter feed: pure romance no politics. But Barack Obama today admitting his youthful idealism--

OBAMA: There is not a liberal America and conservative America. There is the United States of America.

MITCHELL: --was too optimistic.

OBAMA: There is a lot more that people have in common than divides them but obviously, it's not true when it comes to our politics.

[Cuts back to live]

MITCHELL: Former aides say that Mr. Obama wants to avoid criticizing President Trump, the way George W. Bush refused to criticize him. Even though that is frustrating some democratic activists, Lester?

HOLT: All right Andrea Mitchell, thank you. 

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CBS Evening News
April 24, 2017
6:40:45 PM Eastern

SCOTT PELLEY: Today man who never lost a presidential election made his first major appearance since leaving office. Dean Reynolds is in Chicago now with the reemergence of Barack Obama.

[Cuts to video]

[Applause]

DEAN REYNOLDS: Mr. Obama appeared cool and at ease to a degree only a former president can appreciate.

BARACK OBAMA: What's been going on while I've been gone? [Laughter]

REYNOLDS: At the University of Chicago where he once taught constitutional law, the 44th president chartered a post-presidential future.

OBAMA: The single most important thing I can do is to help in any way I can prepare the next generation of leadership to take up the baton and to take their own crack at changing the world.

REYNOLDS: There was no mention of Donald Trump, no response to the frantic attempts to erase the Obama legacy or the evidence-free charges that he tapped Mr. Trump's phones. Instead, after several months vacationing and decompressing with friends, Mr. Obama chose a forum with budding political activists to recall his days here as a community organizer.

OBAMA: There's a reason why I'm always optimistic, even when things look like they're sometimes not going the way I want. And that is because of young people like this.

REYNOLDS: Mr. Obama did criticize generally what he sees as a broken system in Washington.

OBAMA: Special interests dominate the debates in Washington in ways that don't match up with what the broad majority of Americans feel.

REYNOLDS: And he had some advice for those seeking to follow his path into politics.

OBAMA: Worry less about what you want to be and worry more about what you want to do.

[Cuts back to live]

REYNOLDS: Mr. Obama's next public appearance, Scott, will be May 7th in Boston where he will accept the Kennedy Library's Profiles in Courage Award.

PELLEY: Dean Reynolds in Chicago.