Flake: Obama has a better 'tone' than Trump

Flake: Obama has a better 'tone' than Trump
© Greg Nash

Arizona Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeFive reasons why US faces chronic crisis at border Senate GOP faces retirement brain drain Former GOP lawmaker: Republican Party 'engulfed in lies and fear' MORE (R) criticized President TrumpDonald TrumpSt. Louis lawyer who pointed gun at Black Lives Matter protesters considering Senate run Chauvin found guilty as nation exhales US says Iran negotiations are 'positive' MORE Friday while offering rare praise for Trump's predecessor, former President Obama.

Flake told CNN's Wolf Blitzer that the tone used by the former president, who has hit the campaign trail in recent weeks for Democrats across the country, is "better" than that of Trump.

Trump has faced calls to cool down his rhetoric following several attempted pipe bombings of top Democratic politicians, including Obama.


In the interview, Flake said that Trump's diatribes on immigration reform and undocumented immigrants in particular have been problematic.

"I've always felt that the tone is better," Flake said of Obama's rhetoric, adding that he doesn't "like the tone that President Trump has taken with regard to blaming immigrants."

"This notion that this is all the Democrats' fault is just wrong," Flake added in the interview, referring to issues with America's immigration system.

Every single Democratic senator voted for "the last real vote we had on substantial immigration reform," Flake added, referring to a 2013 attempt from the "Gang of Eight" senators to pass a comprehensive immigration reform bill that passed the Senate but never was acted upon in the House.

Flake was a member of the group, which included the late Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainBush says he doesn't criticize other presidents to avoid risking friendship with Michelle Obama 'Real Housewives of the GOP' — Wannabe reality show narcissists commandeer the party George W. Bush: 'It's a problem that Americans are so polarized' they can't imagine him being friends with Michelle Obama MORE (R-Ariz.), himself an occasional critic of Trump.

Flake's comments followed his condemnation of an ad released by the president featuring footage of Luis Bracamontes, an undocumented Mexican immigrant who was deported but returned to the U.S. and killed two police officers.

CNN refused to air the ad, with the company calling it "racist" in a statement while the Arizona Republican called it "sickening" in his own tweet a day earlier.

"This is a sickening ad. Republicans everywhere should denounce it," Flake tweeted Thursday.

A frequent critic of the president, Flake announced last year that he would not seek reelection in 2018.