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Obama ‘meeting with potential 2020 presidential candidates’ over past few months

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Barack Obama has reportedly been meeting with 2020 presidential hopefuls in his Washington DC office the past few months.

The former president has supposedly held one-on-one meetings with several potential Democratic candidates including Joe Biden, Senator Elizabeth Warren, and Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick, Politico reported.

Mr Obama’s office has not yet responded to a request for comment, but “multiple people who have been briefed on the secretive sit-downs” informed the news site of the private sit-downs.

President Donald Trump’s predecessor is seen as a leader in the party more so than Hillary Clinton given the contentious nature and Democratic disappointment of the last election. He had steered clear of creating direct conflict with Mr Trump until the commander-in-chief decided to violate Mr Obama’s signature foreign policy achievement: the Iran nuclear deal.

Mr Obama wrote a scathing Facebook post explaining why the deal was necessary and why it was a “serious mistake” on the part of his successor.

However, with the midterm elections looming in November and presidential campaigns expected to ramp up afterwards the party is looking to its leaders for direction.

Mr Obama even met with former Democratic candidate and now Independent party Senator Bernie Sanders during the series of meetings, Politico reported.

Mr Sanders had been seen as a figure who would push Ms Clinton more to the left on her platform during the 2016 election. There was some chaos however, after he held his ground on congratulating Ms Clinton on receiving the party’s nomination and did not immediately encourage his supporters to follow suit for the sake of party unity.

“Obama discussed his views on the differences between idealism and practicality, and Sanders responded with his,” the site reported.

However, the pair did not discuss a possible bid by the 76-year-old Mr Sanders in 2020.

His meeting with Ms Warren was not the warm, friendly one many may expect. The former head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, had confronted Mr Obama’s acceptance of $400,000 to speak on Wall Street after leaving the White House, citing concerns about the influence of money in politics.

Mr Patrick has been a longtime friend of the Obamas and sits on the board of the first couple’s foundation as well. He is seen as another hopeful given his successes as governor and relationships in Washington.

Mr Biden is expected to make an announcement on whether he will run once again for president after the midterms.



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