His foray into the 2020 election this past Friday was pure Barack Obama—pointedly partisan, sometimes entertaining and displaying an amazing lack of self-awareness. In what was likely a preplanned maneuver, a friendly reporter received a recording of the former president’s 30-minute pep talk to his administration’s alumni association and posted the juicier nuggets online.
While revealing that the absence of sports is driving him “nuts” and he enjoys that his daughters “are stuck having dinner with me,” Mr. Obama used the webcast to encourage former staffers to “feel the same sense of urgency that I do” and join in “spending as much time as necessary and campaigning as hard” as they can to elect former Vice President Joe Biden.
Mr. Obama unleashed on President Trump’s handling of Covid-19, calling it as “an absolute chaotic disaster.” There have been mistakes and cringeworthy statements, but surely there has been progress, too—for example, on vaccines—and good early decisions, such as restricting travel from China. At odds with the facts, Mr. Obama’s uncalibrated condemnation of Mr. Trump is also at odds with the praise the administration has received from Democrats in the know such as California Gov. Gavin Newsom (“Promise made, promise kept”) and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (“The federal government stepped up and was a great partner”).