President Barack Obama gave his farewell speech on Tuesday night, looking back at his legacy and encouraging supporters demoralized by the election of Republican Donald Trump to feel optimistic about the US future. The Democratic president felt nostalgic as he prepares to leave the White House on January 20, after eight years in office. His top policy achievements were jolted by the November 8 election of Trump, who has threatened to undo Obama’s actions on issues ranging from advancing healthcare reform to curbing climate change.
First lady Michelle Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, his wife, Jill Biden, and many current and former White House staff members and campaign workers were present at the event. Obama plans to remain in Washington for the next two years while his younger daughter, Sasha, finishes high school. He has indicated he wants to give Trump space after leaving office by not maintaining a high public profile. Obama encouraged supporters to keep fighting for issues like the environment, gay rights and economic equality.
8.24 am: Obama concludes his speech with his campaign slogan, ‘Yes We Can’.
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) January 11, 2017
8.23 am: I ask you again to believe, not in my ability to bring about change, in yours: Obama
8.20 am: President Obama thanks his staff.
8.18 am: The president calls choosing Joe Biden as his vice-president the first and the best decision since he started to run.
8.16 am: The president addresses the First Lady Michelle Obama, says, “You took a role you didn’t ask for, and you made it your own… A new generation sets its sights higher because it has you as a role model.”
8.14 am: I’ve seen…children remind us of our obligations to care for refugees, to work in peace, and above all to look out for each other
8:12 am: “If you’re tired of arguing with strangers on the internet, try to talk with one in real life,” says Obama
8:10 am: We weaken ties when we write off whole system as inevitably corrupt and blame leaders we elect, without examining our own role in electing them: Obama
8.08 am: America is no fragile thing. But the gains of our long journey to freedom are not assured: Barack Obama
8:06 am: Our democracy is threatened whenever we take it for granted … All of us, regardless of party, should throw ourselves into the task of rebuilding our democratic institutions: Obama
8.05 am: To all who serve, it has been the honor of my lifetime to be your Commander-in-Chief: Obama
8.04 am: “Rivals like Russia or China cannot match our influence around the world – unless we give up what we stand for, and turn ourselves into just another big country that bullies smaller neighbors.”
Also read | Read full text of Barack Obama’s final address
8.04 am: I reject discrimination against Muslim Americans: Obama
8.03 am: “Democracy can buckle if it gives into fear.”
8.00 am: Violent fanatics, autocrats, represent the fear of change: Obama
7.57 am: “The global coalition we’re leading against ISIL has taken out their leaders, and taken away about half their territory
7:55 am: Without bolder action, our children won’t have time to debate…climate change; they’ll be busy dealing with its effects
7.54 am: It’s become safer to retreat into our own bubble… surrounded my people who thinks like us, and never challenge our outlook … eventually accepting only information that fits our bubble. Without a willingness to accept new information, we’ll just keep talking past each other: Obama
7.53 am: When Black Americans lodge peaceful protest, they demand equality, not privilege: Obama
7.51 am: “Economy doesn’t have to be a zero sum game … Last year, incomes rose for all races … And women.”
7.50 am: Racism is still a devisive issue in our society … but race relations are better, but we’re not where we need to be: US President
7.49 am: We can argue about how to achive goals, but we can’t be complacent to achieving goals: Obama
7.44 am: Democracy doesn’t require uniformity, but it does require a basic sense of solidarity: Obama
7.43 am: “In 10 days, the halmark of America’s democracy will shine,” the President, speaks asserting peaceful transition of power.
7.41 am: Obama lists down the achievements of his administration, including killing Osama Bin Laden and America and says, “America is better than when we started.”
7.39 am: Sometimes it feels like we move one step forward, and two steps backward, but the long sweep of America has been defined by forward motion: Obama
7.38 am: America hasn’t been flawless from the start, but we’ve shown the capacity to change: Obama
7.35 am: Crowds cheer “four more years”.
7.33 am: The president starts speaking as crowds cheer, thanks the US citizens for support. “You made me a better president, you made me a better man.”
7.30 am: 44th President of the United States, Barack Obama takes stage to deliver his farewell address.