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Barack Obama Celebrates Midterm Wins, Hopes for a 'Return to Honesty, Decency'

Lindsay Kimble
Barack Obama Celebrates Midterm Wins, Hopes for a 'Return to Honesty, Decency'

After returning to the public eye to help campaign in numerous key midterm races leading up to Tuesday’s election, former President Barack Obama celebrated the Democratic victory in the House— but remained focused on the uphill battle.

Democrats seized control of the House of Representatives for the first time in eight years, while Republicans were guaranteed to keep control of the Senate.

Issuing a statement, the former president said, “I congratulate everybody who showed up and participated in our democracy yesterday. Obviously, the Democrats’ success in flipping the House of Representatives, several governorships, and state legislatures will get the most attention.”

Continued Obama, “But even more important than what we won is how we won: by competing in places we haven’t been competitive in a long time, and by electing record numbers of women and young veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan, a surge of minority candidates, and a host of outstanding young leaders. The more Americans who vote, the more our elected leaders look like America.”

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The former president noted that he and former First Lady Michelle Obama were proud of former Obama administration members who won their races, adding, “Even the young candidates across the country who fell short have infused new energy and new blood into our democratic process, and America will be better off for it for a long time to come.”

Obama congratulated voters, as well, for “turning out in record numbers.”

Despite the House victory, though, the former president asserted that “our work goes on.”

“The change we need won’t come from one election alone – but it is a start. Last night, voters across the country started it. And I’m hopeful that going forward, we’ll begin a return to the values we expect in our public life – honesty, decency, compromise, and standing up for one another as Americans, not separated by our differences, but bound together by one common creed.”

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Obama campaigned around the country on behalf of Democrats in recent weeks, often calling out the right’s rhetoric. While campaigning for Democrats in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on Oct. 26, the father of two took a jab at the Trump administration and its number of indictments.

“They promised to take on corruption… remember that?” Obama said in a clip obtained by CNN. “They have gone to Washington and just plundered away.”

He added, “In Washington, they have racked enough indictments to field a football team. Nobody in my administration got indicted. So, how is it that they’ve cleaned things up?”

And this week, Obama stopped by the Fairfax County, Virginia, campaign headquarters of Senator Tim Kaine and Jennifer Wexton, bringing donuts and a message.

“You vote, you might save a life; that’s pretty rare when that happens. … The character of this country is on the ballot,” he said, according to a video from CBS News. “Who we are is on the ballot. What kind of politics we expect is on the ballot. How we conduct ourselves in public life is on the ballot. How we treat other people is on the ballot.”