President Obama decried the “meanness” in politics that had erupted under his administration during an address about bipartisanship to the Illinois General Assembly on Wednesday.
“It’s been noted, often by pundits, that the tone of our politics hasn’t gotten better since I was inaugurated. In fact, it’s gotten worse,” Obama said. “That there’s still this yawning gap between the magnitude of our challenges and the smallness of our politics, which is why in my final State of the Union address and in the one before that, I had to acknowledge that one of my few regrets is my inability to reduce the polarization and meanness in our politics.”
By Obama’s math, he will spend the last two years of his presidency mourning the fact that he’s been divisive.
Obama struck a similar tone last month in an interview with CBS.
“The one thing that gnaws on me is the degree of polarization,” Obama said. “This has gotten worse over the last several years. And I think that in those early months, my expectation was that we could pull the parties together a little more effectively.”
Obama made the speech on the nine-year anniversary of his announcement that he would run for president at the same site. Evidently, this was so momentous that it deserved a presidential trip to Springfield, Illinois to mark the occasion.