- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 19, 2016

President Obama criticized Republicans for staging a “strange and outrageous” nominating convention this week and said their proposals would harm the country.

In a fundraising email to Democrats, Mr. Obama reminisced about the GOP convention in 2012, when actor Clint Eastwood lectured an empty chair on stage as if he were talking bluntly to the president. Mr. Obama called that episode “laughable,” but he said there’s worse to come from Republicans this year.

“Given who they’re about to nominate for president, a stunt like that could rank pretty low on the list of strange and outrageous incidents we see this week in Cleveland,” Mr. Obama said. “This time, the Republicans are going to spend the week talking about building a wall on the Mexican border and banning people based on their religion. They’re going to talk about policies that stack the deck even further in favor of millionaires and billionaires, while claiming to be in it for the little guy.”

On the opening night of the Republican National Convention, speakers criticized presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton over her role in the terrorist attack on Benghazi and for being untrustworthy.

Mr. Obama said Republicans intend to “drag her name through the mud, because that’s the only way they’ll convince anyone to vote for their nominee.”

“I know Hillary can take it. She won’t back down from this fight,” Mr. Obama said.

• Dave Boyer can be reached at dboyer@washingtontimes.com.

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