July 21st, 2009
12:01 PM ET
4 years ago

'I'm a little frumpy,' Obama says

President Obama responded to criticism of his jeans with a simple explanation: 'Those jeans are comfortable.'
President Obama responded to criticism of his jeans with a simple explanation: 'Those jeans are comfortable.'

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Sometimes even one of the most powerful men in the world has to answer to the fashion police.

President Barack Obama found himself in just that situation in an interview that aired Tuesday on NBC.

Asked about criticism of the jeans he wore recently when he threw out the first pitch last week at the Major League Baseball All-Star game, Obama didn't make any excuses.

"Michelle – she looks fabulous," the president said of his wife who has increasingly become a global fashion super star since Election Day.

"I'm a little frumpy," Obama said of himself by comparison.

The president also offered some insights into his self-admitted lack of sartorial expertise.

"Up until a few years ago, I only had four suits," the commander-in-chief said.

"I hate to shop. Those jeans are comfortable. And for those of you who want your president to look great in his tight jeans, I'm sorry. I'm not the guy," Obama added.

Obama's jeans choice for his all-star game appearance were widely panned by fashion critics and even dubbed "mom jeans."

Related video: Jeanne Moos takes on Obama's 'mom jeans'


Filed under: Popular Posts • President Obama
soundoff (292 Responses)
  1. Fla.

    Seriously? The fringe will criticize & complain about ANYTHING.

    "Jeans"...I've heard it all now. Unbelievable.

    Stay focused & comfortable, Mr. President, and ignore these overtly superficial & petty distracters.

    July 21, 2009 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  2. Malia

    Michelle Obama a global fashion super star? Are you kidding me?

    July 21, 2009 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  3. smokey

    I agree with Pres Obama..I have always been one to go for the comfort, than what style is in..To me it is more important to be comfortale in what you are wearing, then to be worried about what people expect or want you to wear..I dress to please myself and not others, unless it is very special occassion like a wedding, at which time i will sacrifice comfort for the wedding party !..So go on Obama , you are doing a great job !!!

    July 21, 2009 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  4. Chitown Jason

    Who cares about the jeans? Go SOX!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    (btw plz hire a pitching coach before your next pitch, Pres. Obama, that was really bad!)

    July 21, 2009 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  5. New Era

    I guess people have nothing better to do. If his jeans were tight and his crotch was showing it would have been all over the tabloids. leave this man alone and let him enjoy the same rights and freedom as everyone else!

    July 21, 2009 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  6. kewpie

    Just file the story under fluff. Who cares what kind of jeans the President wears?! Is he going to figure out how to put more money in my jeans pocket?

    July 21, 2009 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  7. Dan in VA

    Who even asked him about his pants? That's some hard-hitting journalism for you. Ha ha.

    Why didn't they ask him about his birth certificate, or why he keeps pushing for more taxes and money for his government? Are they allowed to ask those questions?

    July 21, 2009 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  8. Drew

    I don't care whether this is newsworthy or not...it's so nice to have a president that isn't elite...just a down-to-earth guy. Do I wish that he wasn't spending so much? Sure. But I'd say that what he's doing for the image of the US more than compensates.

    July 21, 2009 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  9. Illini

    PLEASE!!!! Enough already!

    The news media has officially become a laughing stock when it comes to this President! All the fawning is appalling!

    We will certainly miss you Walter Cronkite!

    July 21, 2009 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  10. whatever

    Who cares what he is wearing? This is news? Come on CNN, get off these stupid, no good, do nothing stories about the POTUS and start talking about his politics!!!

    July 21, 2009 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  11. The Lonely Libertarian of Liverpool NY

    I do not often agree with our President, but on wearing jeans I support him 100%. Why can't men wear what is comfortable. Most times when we wear jeans is because we are doing some type of outdoor work, and comforatable is key if you are going to be sweaty and lifting.
    Just ask the fashion police how long they can mow a lawn with jeans so tight you can't breathe or move?

    July 21, 2009 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  12. Mike D. in San Diego

    This is not journmalism...this is the media blushing and squirming over their crush on the new cute guy at school.

    "Did you see his jeans?" (giggle, squirm, giggle) CNN whispers to ABC.

    "I think he's JUST DREAMY" (tee hee hee) ABC whispers back.

    I voted for the guy and I'm sick and tired of the mainstream media fawning over him. Why don't you criticize him like you're supposed to until he gets off that cute butt of his and addresses gay rights.

    July 21, 2009 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  13. Stuffit

    Pretty weighty subject matter, thanks CNN. HR 1018 passed the house Friday, yet no discussion here. I guess if Americans don't know about the 700 million dollars we just spent to conduct a bi-annual census of wild horses and provide "enhanced contraception" for them, it's just all the better. What's even richer is that the sponsor of the bill was from West Virginia.

    I wouldn't think that a program named "Restore our American Mustangs Act" would have a provision for contraception in it. If the point of the bill is to 'restore' the Mustang, one would think just the opposite.

    But what do I know? I'm not an enlightened member of Congress.

    July 21, 2009 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  14. Buffalo

    Well, what do you know? The President wears blue jeans. So do 70% of all airline travelers and 95% of all Americans under the age of 75.

    I'm guessing President Obama’s critics would have expected the President to wear robes, i.e.; dress like the Savior, as they like to mock him. I don't know what is more appalling; your ignorance regarding this man or your sacrilegious statements comparing our President to our Lord.

    I must ask: Do any of President Obama's critics wonder, or even care, if President Bush wore blue jeans while brushing his Texas property?

    July 21, 2009 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  15. Joyce Becker

    Of course the President would have looked nicer in slim jeans, but the important thing is that he should be comfortable on his free time and he looked good to me. Of course if he wore slim jeans then there would be those who said he looked too sexy in them, just can't please everyone it seems.

    July 21, 2009 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  16. makesUwonder

    Who cares, there were only about four thousand people there anyway. Not a real big turn out for the President. Guess a lot of people just weren't interested in the man.

    July 21, 2009 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  17. Political Science Major

    Another Mainstream Media pass or ignorance on the real issues President Obama Faces.

    $780,000,000,000 Bush Bank Bailout +
    $800,000,000,000 Obama Recovery Act +
    $1,000,000,000,000 Obama FY 2009 Budget +
    $1,000,000,000,000 Obama Universal Healthcare =
    $3,580,000,000,000 Spent in 1 year

    My Annual Salary $40,000 taxed $10,000 from my salary. Spending needs to stop and No Media Outlet is criticizing what Obama wants to spend but talks about has time to talk about his Fashion faux paux.

    July 21, 2009 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  18. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    Who cares if Obama is a frump? Bush is a war criminal..... let's get some perspective here.

    July 21, 2009 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  19. Midwest

    I am a 50+ year old man. I've owned only two suits at one time (my whole life). I heard President Obama make the same comment (I only had four suits) during his campaign. For some reason, he seems to think that four suits isn't alot! But with each suit costing upwards of $300 (estimate) - I'd say he's a bit out of touch with what the average American can afford.

    July 21, 2009 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  20. Seth

    The fashion world is delusional. Who the hell cares what his jeans look like. They probably didn’t cost multiple hundreds of dollars so the fashionistas get up in arms? Give me a break, the fashion industry is useless to just about every average American. As much as I didn’t think Obama should become President (nor did I think McCain should be) I'm glad that he doesn’t have to spend a gratuitous amount of money for some stupid designer jeans.

    July 21, 2009 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  21. SUE IN CT

    He still looked pretty darn good to me, frumpy or not. Use your imagination!

    July 21, 2009 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  22. Frumpy and Incompetent

    I'd like a President who knows what he's doing and won't bankrupt the country with runaway spending and big government. I don't care what he wears!

    July 21, 2009 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  23. dave

    can you spell "who cares"

    fix it so that no one who has has health insurance for 29 years goes bankrupt after a heart attack and you can wear shorts to work Mr. President

    July 21, 2009 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  24. One Love

    I was wondering if he borrowed the jeans from John McCain.

    July 21, 2009 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  25. Rob

    His must have stimulus plan DID NOT do what he said it would. His 'cap and trade' farce of a bill will increase peoples' utility bills, AND has no support from countries who put out more pollution than the US does. His healthcare dream is nothing more than a nightmare that will RAISE taxes, FORCE private healthcare OUT OF BUSINESS (raising unemployment even more), and will LOWER the quality of healthcare in America.

    And the only thing he can gripe about is his clothing style? Man, is this guy full of himself or what? History classes 50 years from now will look back upon this as one of the biggest mistakes America ever made. In fact, people, governments, businesses will have a new term for someone who looks real cool, but comes in and messes things up completely and does more damage than anyone thought possible...Obama'd

    July 21, 2009 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
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