by Susan Jones, CNSnews:
“The president does believe it is important that his successor is somebody who recognizes that our country is safer than it was eight years ago, that we enhanced our standing around the world, that we’ve strengthened our alliances — that we have refined and improved and strengthened our homeland security,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters on Tuesday.
“The American people do face a question about whether or not they want to build on that progress, because there surely is more that can be done to protect the American people,” he added. Earnest made the comment two days after a Muslim American claimed his deadly attack on an Orlando nightclub was inspired by ISIS.
Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, also speaking on Tuesday, said the FBI has “hundreds, if not thousands” of open investigations” going on, and he said the FBI “routinely” breaks up plots to the homeland.
At Tuesday’s White House briefing, a reporter asked Earnest about President Obama and Hillary Clinton using similar language to make the same points in their speeches on Tuesday: “And so, I’m wondering if you can talk at all about if there’s coordination on that,” the reporter asked Earnest.
“No…I’m not aware of any advanced coordination or notification that was provided by the White House to the Clinton campaign of the president’s comments today,” Earnest replied. “That said, I don’t think you should be particularly surprised that the president’s comments and views on this topic are similar to the views and principles that are articulated by the woman who served as his secretary of state the during his first term in office.
“We often — you often hear me indicate that the president believes it is important for his successor to build on the progress that our country has made and not scrap it. I often make that argument in the context of our country’s success in digging out of the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, and it is certainly true in that context,” Earnest said.
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