President Obama Calls Donald Trump's Rigged Election Claim "Ridiculous"

President Obama Speaking - Getty - H 2016
Getty Images

President Obama Speaking - Getty - H 2016

"What does that even mean?"

President Barack Obama pushed back at Republican nominee Donald Trump's suggestions that the November election won't be completely fair, calling the assertion "ridiculous."

During a White House briefing on Thursday, he had a suggestion for Trump, the candidate he has declared "unfit" for the presidency: "Go out there and try to win the election."

During a rally on Monday, Trump told the crowd: "I’m afraid the election is going to be rigged, I have to be honest."

The GOP presidential nominee said he was making that point because once again, he claimed, "thousands" of people had been turned away from his speech by the fire marshal, insinuating it was a political ploy.

During the briefing on Thursday, the president asserted, "Of course the election will not be rigged. What does that even mean?"

Obama noted that the federal government does not run the presidential election. Rather, that's a function carried out by states and local governments. But he said the federal government will "take seriously our responsibility" to monitor and preserve the integrity of the election and Americans' voting rights.

In regards to the presidential race, Trump and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton will soon be receiving classified briefings, giving them access to sensitive information about national security and America's military posture. Asked whether he was worried about Trump having access to such material, Obama said simply that those who want to be president need to start acting like it.

"That means being able to receive these briefings and not spread them around," he said.

The president's appearance before reporters followed an hours-long meeting with military leaders at the Pentagon on the fight against the Islamic State group.