Biden, Obama talk ‘regularly,’ in ‘close touch’ on a ‘range’ of issues, White House says
The White House on Thursday said President Biden and former President Barack Obama “talk regularly” about a “range of issues,” as well as personal matters, but did not disclose the frequency of those conversations.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Thursday said Biden and Obama “are not just former colleagues, I guess you call them, as president and vice president.”
“They also remain close friends and they talk regularly about a range of issues, from policy issues to bouncing ideas off of each other, to their families,” Psaki said. “So they are in close touch, but we just don’t read out those specific calls.”
She added: “We keep them private.”
Psaki was pressed, though, on how regularly the two speak.
“That would be violating their friendship,” she said. “The privacy of their friendship, I should say.”
Psaki was also asked whether Biden kept in close touch with other former presidents, to which she replied Obama “is the former president he is most frequently in touch with.”
“I’m not going to define it more, other than to say they engage, not just about important moments in our country, but also about their own families,” Psaki said.
“They have a connection on a personal level,” she continued. “So they discuss a range of personal issues when they connect.”
Psaki, last month, said Biden regularly consults with Obama, and said she expects that relationship to continue “through the course of President Biden’s presidency.”
Biden has tapped a number of individuals who previously served in the Obama administration for his Cabinet – including Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, chief of staff Ron Klain, national security adviser Jake Sullivan, climate czar John Kerry, U.S. Domestic Policy Council Director Susan Rice, among others.
A number of White House officials also served in the Obama administration, including Psaki, who served as deputy White House press secretary and deputy White House communications director during Obama’s first term, and State Department spokesperson during his second term.
Meanwhile, on his first day in office, Biden signed a number of executive actions that restored Obama-era policies, including the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and his move to rejoin the Paris climate accord.