Half a year ahead of the US presidential race, former US President Barack H. Obama slammed President Donald Trump's handling of the coronavirus crisis.
In a 30-minute conversation with members of the Obama Alumni Association, Obama referred to Trump's management of the outbreak as "a complete chaotic disaster" and attacked the President in a number of other areas.
Three of his former administration officials confirmed to CNN that Obama strongly criticized his successor, stating that the Democratic Party bears a responsibility for putting its weight behind the party's candidate Sen. Joe Biden in the November presidential race.
According to sources, Obama said that, "the response to the coronavirus eruption served as a critical reminder of why strong government leadership is needed during a global crisis. This election that's coming up -- on every level -- is so important because what we're going to be battling is not just a particular individual or a political party."
"What we're fighting against is these long-term trends in which being selfish, being tribal, being divided, and seeing others as an enemy -- that has become a stronger impulse in American life."
Obama was especially critical of the current administration's handling of the coronavirus outbreak, saying: "It's part of the reason why the response to this global crisis has been so anemic and spotty. It would have been bad even with the best of governments. It has been an absolute chaotic disaster when that mindset -- of 'what's in it for me' and 'to heck with everybody else'—when that mindset is operationalized in our government."
A spokesman for Obama refused to confirm the former President's comments, but Yahoo! News said it had attained a recording of the remarks.