Obama's comments drew a quick reply from Donald Trump, who said Monday afternoon that he would have beaten Obama.
President Obama said that he thinks he would have won against me. He should say that but I say NO WAY! - jobs leaving, ISIS, OCare, etc.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 26, 2016
During the interview, Axelrod asked Obama if Hillary Clinton should have focused more on the economy.
"Look, you know, I think that Hillary Clinton performed wonderfully under really tough circumstances," Obama responded. "I've said this publicly, I'll repeat it. I think there was a double standard with her. For whatever reason, there's been a longstanding difficulty in her relationship with the press that meant her flaws were wildly amplified relative to..."
"If you think you're winning, then you have a tendency, just like in sports, maybe to play it safer," the President continued. "And the economy has been improving. There is a sense, obviously, that some communities have been left behind from the recovery and people feeling anxious about that. But if she was looking at the campaign and saying OK, I'm winning right now, and her economic agenda was in fact very progressive."
Obama said Clinton "understandably" decided to focus on Trump.
He also said that Democrats aren't good enough at communicating their message.
"I think the issue was less that Democrats have somehow abandoned the white working class, I think that's nonsense. Look, the Affordable Care Act benefits a huge number of Trump voters. There are a lot of folks in places like West Virginia or Kentucky who didn't vote for Hillary, didn't vote for me, but are being helped by this," Obama said. "The problem is, is that we're not there on the ground communicating not only the dry policy aspects of this, but that we care about these communities, that we're bleeding for these communities."