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Obama to Press: Having You Here Keeps Us Honest

President Obama perceives the press as a check on the government’s power, hoping they’ll continue to be so during Trump’s presidency.

The Hill reports:

President Obama on Wednesday thanked the press for their work during his time in the Oval Office as he prepares to give way to a successor with a more antagonistic relationship with the media.

“You’re not supposed to be sycophants, you’re supposed to be skeptics.

You’re supposed to ask me tough questions. You’re not supposed to be complimentary. You are supposed to cast a critical eye on folks who hold enormous power and make sure we are accountable to the people who sent us here,” Obama said during the final press conference of his presidency.

President-elect Donald Trump has suggested he might limit which journalists are allowed into the White House to cover his presidency.

“We have so many people that want to go in, so we’ll have to just have to pick the people to go into the room. I’m sure other people will be thrilled about that,” Trump said in an interview with “Fox and Friends” early Wednesday.

Obama’s remarks seemed to be aimed at convincing Trump of the importance of the media.

“America needs you and the country needs you,” Obama said of the press.

“My hope is that you will continue with the same tenacity you showed us to get to the bottom of stories. Having you in this building … keeps us honest.”

Photo credit: Gage Skidmore/Flickr.

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