Inside the White House: The Transition from Obama to Trump

Ben Rhodes, President Obama’s foreign policy advisor and senior speech writer, provides an insight into how the White House functioned behind the scenes before and during the transition period.

Members event, Panel Recording
4 July 2018 — 6:00PM TO 7:00PM
Chatham House | 10 St James's Square | London | SW1Y 4LE London

It has been 18 months since Barack Obama left office and made way for Donald Trump. In this time, Trump has withdrawn from the Paris Agreement on climate change, threatened to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and pulled away from the Iran nuclear deal, all of which were key policies of the Obama presidency.

Ben Rhodes discusses working alongside the former president during the Cuba negotiations, the 2011 Bin Laden raid and his disappointment with the 2016 elections.

  • What were the most challenging times for policymakers in the White House during Obama’s eight years?

  • What are the lessons from the Trump administration’s actions thus far and what can be expected going forward?


Ben Rhodes, Deputy National Security Advisor to President Obama (2009-2017); Author, The World as It Is: A Memoir of the Obama White House

Chair: Dr Leslie Vinjamuri, Head, US and the Americas Programme; Dean, the Queen Elizabeth II Academy, Chatham House

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