As the Democratic party becomes flooded with presidential candidates, former President Barack Obama decided to issue a warning to the party in hopes that it will be able to win this upcoming election.
While speaking to potential donors on Friday, Obama applauded the party's candidates for taking progressive steps with their policies. Yet, he cautioned them not to go so far to the left that they end up losing sight of the people they are trying to help.
"Even as we push the envelope and we are bold in our vision we also have to be rooted in reality," Obama said. "The average American doesn’t think we have to completely tear down the system and remake it."
Obama has been careful when addressing the current Democratic field. But, Friday's comments could be seen as a critique of candidates like Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren. Both Sanders and Warren are running on a platform based on "political revolution" and "big, structural change." The idea that these candidates will heavily tax wealthy Americans as well as liberalize the government has sparked concerns in more conservative democratic voters.
Outside of warning candidates not to create plans that will shock undecided voters into venturing away from the party, Obama also reassured donors that the crowded primary race will only create a sharper, more prepared Democratic candidate. As of Thursday, 18 Democrats are running for president. Obama likened this field to the race he ran in 2008. Although he had to weed through just eight competitors, they were still jockeying for elbow room during the primary.
"For those who get stressed about robust primaries, I just have to remind you I had a very robust primary," Obama said. "I’m confident that at the end of the process we will have a candidate that has been tested."