Obama on Voting for Clinton: 'Not Everything's Supposed to Be Inspiring'

November 6, 2016

President Obama made a case that was more pragmatic than hopeful for Hillary Clinton in an interview with MSNBC airing Sunday, saying that "not everything's supposed to be inspiring" but his supporters nevertheless needed to vote for her.

Asked by Al Sharpton about the reported lagging turnout among African-American voters for Clinton, Obama sought to lay out what was at stake for his legacy if Donald Trump won the presidency.

"Everything that we've done over the last eight years will be reversed with a Trump presidency, and everything will be sustained and built on with a Hillary Clinton presidency," he said. "So this vote is as important as any of those other two votes in being able to maintain a progressive agenda."

Obama reeled off a list of liberal policy items that Clinton would make happen if she succeeded him, touching on issues like education and civil rights.

"You can't say you care about those things and then suggest somehow that you're feeling cynical or you're not sufficiently inspired," he said. "Michelle and I, we talk over the dinner table, we explain to our daughters, not everything's supposed to be inspiring. Sometimes you just do what you have to do, and one of the things you've got to do right now is to make sure to vote for Hillary Clinton."

Obama has struck a tone at times bordering on anger with the black community for not mobilizing in large numbers for Clinton. In a speech in front of the Congressional Black Caucus in September, Obama berated audience members that it would be an "insult to my legacy if this community lets down its guard and fails to activate itself in this election!"