April 25th, 2008
12:25 PM ET
10 years ago

Obama: I'm a regular guy—I only have four pairs of shoes


Watch Obama's comments at a press conference Friday.

INDIANAPOLIS, Indiana (CNN) – Democrat Barack Obama responded to the suggestion that some view him as an elitist by pointing to his closet.

At a press conference Friday, the Illinois senator was asked about the perception some voters may have that he comes across as an elitist who "looks too much like a GQ cover" to be able to relate to working class voters.

He first gestured to his clothing choice. "I think this is a fairly standard suit here, you know?" he said. "I haven't changed my approach to dressing too much.

"I basically buy five of the same suit, and then I patch them up and wear them repeatedly. I have four pairs of shoes. Recently I've taken to getting a haircut more frequently than I used to because my mother in law makes fun of me. So I don't think people are too worried about what I'm wearing."

He added he didn't feel the need to go out of his way to prove his "street cred as a down-to-earth guy" because, according to him, people who've known him long enough know that to be the case.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (235 Responses)
  1. Ric

    Democrats for Mc Cain '08

    April 25, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  2. Helene

    He certainly does dress better than McClinton ! Is she competing with the Queen of England for bad style ?

    April 25, 2008 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  3. A. Harrison

    Please use those shoes to stroll the Senate floor some more because you have no experience.

    April 25, 2008 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  4. Susan

    No matter what he's wearing, he's looking down his nose at people. He doesn't want the NAACP to support him b/c he would seem too black (why black people vote for him anyway, I'm not sure). He's lying and saying he disagreed with the pastor whose church he sat in for 20 years. How much of this stuff are people going to believe? Does he really think voters are that dumb?

    There is NOTHING special about Barack Obama.

    Vote Hillary!

    April 25, 2008 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  5. shirley

    Heres a quote from Hillary in the North Carolina Republican on
    Jan. 10, 2008.

    "I will not withdraw the troops from Iraq".

    Now this is news, how is it possible that a person not connected to the news can find this quote but reporter's can't. The news media would rather look in church or print what someone Obama knew years ago 'said' than any real negative stories about Hillary. Who is paying whom here?

    April 25, 2008 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  6. April in Texas

    He seems like a normal kind of guy for me who wants what I have wanted as long as I could vote.. Change washington!!!

    Obama 08

    April 25, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  7. Walt, Belton,TX

    About as down to earth as the Clintons? I don't think so..............

    April 25, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  8. Karen - Branson MO

    Obama is so far removed from an elitist it's been absurd to hear the Clintons and McCain call him elitist for political gain.

    If people haven't bothered to research all the candidates by now, we know they won't be making informed voting decisions any time this century.

    As far as I'm concerned, the arguments that are dead and now look old and tired are elitist, religion, black vote, etc. So what? Bring on Iraq, Afghanistan, mortgages, healthcare, education, re-training programs, revamping the trade policies, create and bring back jobs, environment issues, bringing Congress together to get something done for a change, involving voters to stay in touch with government issues, watching c-span more...you get the idea?

    April 25, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  9. Woohoo!


    April 25, 2008 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  10. Al Ware

    Are we saying that the McCains and Clintons aren't elitist and Obama is? McCain's wife is worth more than 100 million and the Clintons make so much money they won't even release their 2007 tax returns. Please, lets be realistic about this. Obama is about as elitist as Jack Cafferty!

    April 25, 2008 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  11. honkey white guy from cali

    More tabloid trash!

    My goodness this is the biggest story you can come up with CNN I am telling you the huffing post has been doing a better job of getting relevant news out than CNN lately!

    Go Obama 08 Yes We Can

    April 25, 2008 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  12. Dan in CO

    Apparently Barack Obama should be dressing like a homeless man to placate the rank and file.

    April 25, 2008 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  13. david goldman for OBAMA





    April 25, 2008 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  14. my man

    Regular guy for Hamas.

    April 25, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  15. christi

    Oh for god's sake CNN!!!! Get a life!

    This isn't entertainment tonight!

    When are you going to start asking McCain tough questions – let us start parsing his words.

    April 25, 2008 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  16. Charlotte

    We must be getting close to the south again. Lets face it, men don't need much more then a clean shirt and a different tie. Poor me, I'm just like the rest of you. All politicians will say or do anything to win.

    April 25, 2008 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  17. cheater

    regular cheating, lying politician who will steal this nomination.

    April 25, 2008 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  18. isn't it ironic?

    This is the ultimate irony for the Obama supporters (the smart and educated people) to ponder:

    IF Obama is our nominee, it is because the Washington Insiders that he speaks against (Superdelegates) GIVE the nomination to him.

    It will NOT be because he convinced the electorate with his inspiring words of hope and change.

    Hillary STILL got 50% of the vote even being sabotaged and throttled and handicapped.

    April 25, 2008 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  19. tiffany jackson

    Don't worry Barack- we know you are a regular guy.No one is asking Hillary where she got that fancy pant suit and those diamond earrings from.

    April 25, 2008 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  20. hello

    Obama you play racist card when you go south.
    I am convince now that black people are more racist.
    look at the way they vote including Oprah.

    April 25, 2008 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  21. Stacy Clarks, TX

    GO OBAMA!!!!



    OBAMA 08!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    April 25, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  22. Autumn, CA

    He may only have four pairs of shoes, but he's got millions of votes, and the American people's resolve to change Washington, D.C.. More votes, I might add than Hillary or McCain.

    We're with you Barack, don't give up. Remember you are the front runner.

    No liars or warmongers in MY White House.

    Barack 08 !!!!

    April 25, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  23. Cynthia

    It seems that people mistake confidence in who you are as being elitist. Of course, Senators Clinton and John McCain continue to perpetuate such silliness.

    April 25, 2008 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  24. Rebecca

    Obama is a good man and the best candidate we have left. He is only a millionaire now because his book sales skyrocketed once he ran for president. Prior to that his wife and him were making much less than what most Harvard graduates make. Good for him, he wrote 2 excellent books and they have paid off for him. He is far from an elitist.

    April 25, 2008 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  25. rules

    The Obama supporters are so big on rules...
    please read up on the rules governing the superdelegates and the intended role of those superdelegates.

    If Obama wins by cheating that is no win at all.

    April 25, 2008 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
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