Obama on Trump victory: We are now all rooting for his success

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WASHINGTON, Nov 9 (Reuters) - U.S. President Barack Obama pledged on Wednesday to work for a smooth transition of power with president-elect Donald Trump, the Republican winner of Tuesday's election, who has promised to undo Obama's top domestic and foreign policy initiatives.

In brief remarks to reporters in the White House Rose Garden, Obama urged fellow Democrats to put aside their disappointment and tried to strike a positive tone after a devastating electoral defeat.

Related: Clinton speaks for the first time after losing the presidency

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Hillary Clinton speaks for the first time after losing the presidency
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Hillary Clinton speaks for the first time after losing the presidency
Hillary Clinton, former 2016 Democratic presidential nominee, arrives with Former U.S. President Bill Clinton to speak at the New Yorker Hotel in New York, U.S., on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. Donald Trump, a Republican who has never held public office, defeated Clinton after a punishing campaign that exposed searing divides in the American public. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Hillary Clinton, former 2016 Democratic presidential nominee, arrives with Former U.S. President Bill Clinton to speak at the New Yorker Hotel in New York, U.S., on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. Donald Trump, a Republican who has never held public office, defeated Clinton after a punishing campaign that exposed searing divides in the American public. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 09: Hillary and Bill Clinton arrive to the New Yorker Hotel where she was to address supporters on November 9, 2016 in New York City. The former Democratic Presidential nominee conceded defeat to president-elect Donald Trump earlier in the morning. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 09: John Podesta, the campaign chairman of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton waits for her to concede the presidential election at the New Yorker Hotel on November 9, 2016 in New York City. Republican candidate Donald Trump won the 2016 presidential election in the early hours of the morning in a widely unforeseen upset. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
U.S. Senator Tim Kaine (R) is embraced by Hillary Clinton beforeher address to her staff and supporters about the results of the U.S. election at a hotel in New York, November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
Former President Bill Clinton applauds as his wife, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks in New York, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016. Clinton conceded the presidency to Donald Trump in a phone call early Wednesday morning, a stunning end to a campaign that appeared poised right up until Election Day to make her the first woman elected U.S. president. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
US Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton makes a concession speech after being defeated by Republican president-elect Donald Trump as former President Bill Clinton(L) and running mate Tim Kaine look on in New York on November 9, 2016. / AFP / JEWEL SAMAD (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 09: Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, accompanied by her husband former President Bill Clinton, concedes the presidential election at the New Yorker Hotel on November 9, 2016 in New York City. Republican candidate Donald Trump won the 2016 presidential election in the early hours of the morning in a widely unforeseen upset. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Hillary Clinton addresses her staff and supporters about the results of the U.S. election as former U.S. President Bill Clinton (L) and her running mate Tim Kaine applaud at a hotel in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
US Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton makes a concession speech after being defeated by Republican president-elect Donald Trump in New York on November 9, 2016. / AFP / JEWEL SAMAD (Photo credit should read JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
Hillary Clinton addresses her staff and supporters about the results of the U.S. election as her husband, former U.S. President Bill Clinton, looks on at a hotel in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., November 9, 2016. REUTERS/Carlos Barria
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"It is no secret that the president-elect and I have some pretty significant differences," Obamasaid with a smile about Trump, who had long questioned whether Obama had been born in the United States and his eligibility for office.

"We are now all rooting for his success in uniting and leading the country," Obama said.

Obama and his wife, Michelle, campaigned hard for Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton to defeat Trump, acknowledging that the president's legacy on healthcare, climate change and financial reforms were on the line.

But Obama kept his remarks on Wednesday focused on ensuring a successful transition for Trump, noting that his Republican predecessor, former President George W. Bush, had done the same for him eight years ago.

"Everybody is sad when their side loses an election, but the day after we have to remember that we're actually all on one team," Obama said.

"I want to make sure that handoff is well executed because ultimately we're all on the same team," Obama said.

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