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President Obama is becoming more involved in strategizing to ensure that a Democrat succeeds him and is increasingly vocal about the dangers of a Donald Trump presidency.

According to The Washington Post, the Obama administration is looking for ways to reignite the grass-roots movement that helped him win office in 2008 and 2012 and retain the landmark legislation passed during his tenure.

Although he has not yet endorsed a candidate, the mobilization of would-be Democratic supporters has begun, making it clear that the party views Trump as a legitimate threat. Vice President Joe Biden, for instance, is preparing to campaign in the Rust Belt, a region that includes the upper northeastern states, the Great Lakes and the Midwest.

The Post reports:

Obama and his top aides have been strategizing for weeks about how they can reprise his successful 2008 and 2012 approaches to help elect a Democrat to replace him. And out of concern that a Republican president in 2017—either Trump or Sen. Ted Cruz (Tex.) — would weaken or reverse some of his landmark policies, Obama and his surrogates have started making the case that it is essential for the GOP to be defeated in November.

As a result, Obama is poised to be the most active sitting president on the campaign trail in decades.

Central to the White House effort to stop Trump — or, under a less likely scenario, one of his rivals — is reassembling and energizing the coalition that propelled Obama into office; that means African Americans, Latinos, young voters and women.

Speaking at a Democratic National Committee fundraiser in Austin on Friday, Obama said that consolidating the gains that Democrats have made over the course of his presidency will depend on ensuring that people are “engaged and working just as hard and just as full of hope as they did in 2008.”

So far, the Democratic establishment has mostly focused on supporting Hillary Clinton, although numerous polls suggest that Bernie Sanders would do better against Trump in a general election.

Posted by Donald Kaufman

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