In his new memoir “A Promised Land,” former President Barack Obama directly attacks ex-Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, claiming that she brought “xenophobia, anti-intellectualism, paranoid conspiracy theories, and antipathy towards black and brown folks” to the Republican Party. He also claimed that his presidential victory in 2008 gave rise to racial tensions in the United States that Donald Trump later took advantage of.
“It was as if my very presence in the White House had triggered a deep-seated panic, a sense that the natural order had been disrupted,” Obama wrote. “Which is exactly what Donald Trump understood when he started peddling assertions that I had not been born in the United States and was thus an illegitimate president. For millions of Americans spooked by a Black man in the White House, he promised an elixir for their racial anxiety.”
Later in his book, Obama zeroed in on Palin as he attacked the Republican Party as a whole.
“Through Palin, it seemed as if the dark spirits that had long been lurking on the edges of the modern Republican Party — xenophobia, anti intellectualism, paranoid conspiracy theories, an antipathy toward Black and brown folks — were finding their way to center stage,” Obama wrote in excerpts obtained by CNN.
The former president added that he “wonder(s) sometimes” about whether the late 2008 Republican nominee John McCain would have still picked Palin had he foreseen “her spectacular rise and her validation as a candidate would provide a template for future politicians, shifting his party’s center and the country’s politics overall in a direction he abhorred.”
Obama also made sure to bash Trump, who pushed the 2011 conspiracy theory that Obama was not born in the United States. The former president used Trump’s birtherism claims to also attack the current GOP leadership, claiming that what he described as their appeal to white Americans to oppose his agenda was not much different.
“In that sense, there wasn’t much difference between Trump and [John] Boehner or [Mitch] McConnell. They, too, understood that it didn’t matter whether what they said was true,” he wrote. “In fact, the only difference between Trump’s style of politics and theirs was Trump’s lack of inhibition.”
Obama then outrageously claimed that it was for this reason alone that he chose his Vice President Joe Biden to act as an intermediary with Republicans.
“One of the reasons I’d chosen Joe to act as an intermediary — in addition to his Senate experience and legislative acumen — was my awareness that in McConnell’s mind, negotiations with the vice president didn’t inflame the Republican base in quite the same way that any appearance of cooperation with (Black, Muslim socialist) Obama was bound to do,” the former president wrote.