02:30 GMT +323 October 2019
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    Former US President Barack Obama shakes hands with visitors as he leaves after a town hall meeting at the 'European School For Management And Technology' (ESMT) in Berlin, Germany, Saturday, April 6, 2019.

    Obama Urges Dems Not to Form ‘Circular Firing Squad’ Against Dem Candidates

    © AP Photo / Michael Sohn
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    Speaking in Germany at a town hall event on Saturday for his Obama Foundation, the former president Barack Obama said he feared “rigidity” among “progressives” that could end up with “shooting at your allies because one of them has strayed from purity on the issues.”

    Obama expressed his concern, noting that there is a need to compromise, citing the Affordable Care Act as something that he said signified progress even though it did not achieve all of his aspirations for US health care.

    "One of the things I do worry about sometimes among progressives in the United States —maybe it’s true here as well — is a certain kind of rigidity where we say, 'Uh, I’m sorry, this is how it’s going to be,' and then we start sometimes creating what’s called a 'circular firing squad,' where you start shooting at your allies because one of them has strayed from purity on the issues. And when that happens, typically the overall effort and movement weakens," he said.

    Obama noted that the structure of democracies requires one “to take into account people who don’t agree with you and that by definition means you’re not going to get 100 percent of what you want.”

    READ MORE: Obama to Youth: ‘You Don’t Have to Have Eight Women Around You Twerking’

    Obama’s comments came in the midst of the scandal surrounding his former vice president Joe Biden who has been accused of inappropriately touching women throughout his political career. Last Friday Biden refused to apologise for any of his previous actions, claiming that he was not being "disrespectful.”

    In his previous address, Biden acknowledged that "the times have changed" and that he would have to change the way he campaigns, referring to his habit of hugging people and grabbing them by the shoulders, while making a joke about hugging the head of Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Lonnie Stephenson, saying that he "had permission" to do so.

    Biden is expected to join the numerous Democrats who have expressed their desire to run for the presidency in 2020, but has so far not made any such announcement — although he has given some hints that he might. He said on 5 April that he was "very close" to making his final decision and announcing whether he will run for president in the upcoming elections.


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