Barack Obama warns Donald Trump

Barack Obama warns Donald Trump

WASHINGTON (APP) - President Barack Obama cautioned against dire predictions for Donald Trump 's presidency Monday, saying his Republican successor faces a reality check if he tries to enact his most controversial campaign promises.

Donald Trump Barack Obama conversation at White House

Obama said that deporting millions of immigrants , tearing up mutual defense treaties with NATO and Japan, and unraveling global deals on Iran's nuclear program and the environment were not as simple as delivering tub-thumping rhetoric.

"Regardless of what experience or assumptions he brought to the office, this office has a way of waking you up," Obama said in a press conference that sometimes appeared to be a direct message to the billionaire populist.

"Reality has a way of asserting itself," he said, while offering his view that Trump was pragmatic rather than ideological.

Trump's election has been met with euphoria among supporters, but also with a wave of protests across the United States that are unusual for the world's leading democracy.

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Obama said that during a meeting with Trump at the White House last week, he had told the 70-year-old president-elect that his actions can move markets, tanks and public sentiment.

"I emphasized to him that, look, in an election like this that was so hotly contested and so divided, gestures matter," Obama said.

"It's really important to try to send some signals of unity, and to reach out to minority groups or women or others that were concerned about the tenor of the campaign."

"Do I have concerns? Absolutely. Of course, I have concerns. He and I differ on a whole bunch of issues. But the federal government and our democracy is not a speedboat -- it's an ocean liner."

Amid dire predictions about the end of the republic and the global order, Obama said that Trump's inexperience in politics and lack of intellectual baggage could be an asset.

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"I don't think he is ideological. I think ultimately he is pragmatic in that way," Obama told reporters at his first news conference since the Republican mogul defeated Democrat Hillary Clinton last week's presidential election.

"And that can serve him well as long as he's got good people around him and he has a clear sense of direction," he continued.

Obama said that Trump had already conveyed a "commitment to NATO " that seemed to run against his campaign promises.

During a visit this week to Europe, and then Peru for a summit with Asia-Pacific leaders, Obama said he would be able to tell allies "there is no weakening of resolve when it comes to America's commitment to maintaining a strong and robust NATO relationship."

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"This is a time of great change in the world, but America's always been a pillar of strength and a beacon of hope to peoples around the globe. And that's what it must continue to be," Obama said.

Obama inadvertently pointed to another example from his own presidency where the campaign rubber meets the road -- closing the 'war on terror' prison at Guantanamo Bay, currently home to 60 inmates.

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