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At one point referencing the "crazy stuff that's coming out of this White House", Obama told students and others gathered at the University of IL at Urbana-Champaign that even if they don't agree with Democrats on certain issues, they should still be "concerned with our current course" and want to see a "restoration of honesty and decency and lawfulness in government".

Former U.S. President Barack Obama assailed President Donald Trump and Republicans on Friday, urging Democrats to deliver a check on the administration's "abuses of power" and restore a sense of sanity to politics by voting in November's elections.

Former President Barack Obama went on the campaign trail on Friday, supporting Democrats in his home state of IL while bashing Trump and the GOP. "I have to say this to President Obama - if the Dems got in with their agenda in November of nearly 2 years ago, instead of having 4.2 [GDP] up, i believe honestly we'd have 4.2 down.This is not called a recovery, this is called a rocket ship".

"The point Washington made", Obama said, speaking from a stage in rural IL, "is that it's essential to American democracy that in a government of and by and for the people, there should be no permanent ruling class".

"We're told that Donald Trump is the only person who violates norms or does anything differently, and we do have a norm that former presidents speak well of their successors-you saw George W. Bush do that for all eight years of the Obama presidency", she said.

Barack Obama is officially on the campaign trail again. "We've seen basic norms and principles that have served us well for decades increasingly violated", Obama said. Obama said that's not how democracy is supposed to work.

Trump acknowledged that Obama was "trying to take credit" for the economic boom that the United States was experiencing after he got elected.

Trump aides were allegedly concerned about the effect Obama's speech would have on President Trump, with Politico reporting there are fears from the Trump camp that Obama would get inside the president's head ahead of midterm elections.

He later said that over the past 20 years, "division", "resentment", and "paranoia" have "found a home in the Republican Party".

Trump mocked Obama's speech before supporters in North Dakota.

Obama also jabbed Trump on the issue the current president frequently heralds as one of his greatest achievements: the strong economy.

His appearance - one day after a strongly worded critique of Mr Trump at University of IL at Urbana-Champaign - touched on themes of retirement security, climate change and education.

CNN reported Trump was closely monitoring the denials, according to a top White House official.

Obama has spent much of 2018 away from the political fray, focusing on writing his book and raising money for his post-presidency foundation.

"The antidote to government by the powerful few is democracy by the organized many".

Obama spoke in Orange County, Calif. Saturday afternoon.

Obama did not mention any Democratic candidates from IL in his speech, although gubernatorial candidate J.B. Pritzker, Comptroller Susana Mendoza and state Treasurer Mike Frerichs were all in the crowd.