January 7th, 2010
02:52 PM ET
4 years ago

Obama to lay out 'warts' and say 'I'm responsible'

President Obama will take direct responsibility for administration makes when he releases a new report on the December 25 terror incident.
President Obama will take direct responsibility for administration makes when he releases a new report on the December 25 terror incident.

Washington (CNN) - President Obama will take direct responsibility for administration mistakes when he releases a new report on the December 25 terror incident, according to a senior administration official familiar with the president's remarks.

But he is not planning to fire anyone for the foul-up, the official said.

"He will say, 'Here are the warts; I'm responsible,' " said the senior administration official, who requested anonymity because aides were not authorized to discuss the remarks before they're delivered by the president.

The official said the president believes that previous administrations would "play hide the ball" and not come clean with the American people when things go wrong, so he wants to be direct about what needs to be fixed, but the official said the president does not want this process to devolve into finger-pointing.

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Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (258 Responses)
  1. Randolph Carter, I'm no expert, but...

    Maybe he'll also come out and admit that the real reason we're in Afghanistan is to safeguard our profits from the giant natural gas pipeline being built to get Caspian basin natural gas to India, bypassing Russia and Iran. Maybe he'll also tell us about how there are now terrorists in Yemen. Why Yemen? It's a stinking, corrupt rat hole of a country which has absolutely nothing of value except... wait for it... Huge reserves of natural gas and a brand new gas liquification plant. Makes ya wonder, huh? Have a nice day!

    January 7, 2010 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  2. Orange Curtain, CA

    Face the music. The Republican response to terror is WAY too expensive and doesn't work. This is the real reason why government spending sky-rocketed during the Bush Administration along with Cheney's agenda to start unnecessary war based on lies. We need to start over and abolish what Bush did to cut our expenses. This is bankrupting the nation.

    January 7, 2010 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  3. Hmmmm

    Will he take responsibility for the terrible healthcare bill as well?

    Over 60% of Americans don't want the bill passed, but the democrats are going to do it anyway–even though it falls way short of their goals to reduce costs (actually it raises premiums), cover everyone (still 15M uncovered) and deficit neutral (cost over $2.5 T and we pay 10 years for 5 years of nothing).

    Call your congress representative!

    January 7, 2010 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  4. Future expat

    This might confuse GOPers and Tebaggers, since the concept of "accepting responsibility" is entirely alien to them. Some examples:

    -Sarah Palin, perpetual victim of the media, the elites, etc. etc. etc.
    -Everything before 2006 is Clinton's fault, everything between 2006-2008 is the Democratic congress's fault, and everything after 2008 is Obama's fault.

    January 7, 2010 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  5. Great!

    Republicans are going to repeat excerpts of this speech for a few years, so pay attention.

    January 7, 2010 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  6. Tom in Va

    Wow...what a difference.

    Bush NEVER took responsibility for ANYTHING.

    The current GOPdoesn't take responsibility for ANYTHING.

    Even tho the Detroit near-bombing clearly marked a catastrophic failure of the Bush-Cheney adminstration (who had 5YEARS after the 9-11 Commission report to create the infrastructure to have shared intelligence), Obama will publicly take and accept the responsilibity.

    This is a hallmark of LEADERSHIP.

    January 7, 2010 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  7. Dar

    IM glad that he can admit this because he is the person who appointed Janet and why he isnt firing her is way beyond STUPID. Janet doesn't know what she is doing and this will come back to bite him in the butt.
    I just hope and pray that no one gets hurt because of ignorance.
    2010/2012 Change is coming

    January 7, 2010 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  8. Drew

    Whom ever is man/woman enough to speak before the President release his information is stupid. If you want to be true to the President say who you are and man/woman up to you loud mouth. And by the way how much are this loud mouth getting to talk before Obama?

    January 7, 2010 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  9. John Boehner is like Cleopatra, only he bathes in Cheetos

    It may take a while to get the facts, and I am pleased Obama has not invaded Yemen, Somalia, and Iran before determining what caused the foul up. While I am sure that the right wingnuts want to bomb 1.5 billion Muslims, it would be better for our national security to make sure this does not happen again.

    January 7, 2010 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  10. jj wiggins

    wow he takes resposibility for this mistakes unlike bush (mr. i kept the country safe) even though 9/11 happend while bush was reading to little kids.

    January 7, 2010 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  11. Christine

    Now Obama, the King, is using the "blame the previous administration" from normally saying "blame Bush". He forgot that when he came to office He vowed to change Bush policy. It is almost 12 MONTHS, and what has he done? Same old, same old words "Blame Bush" and "Blame past administration".

    I really don't understand the character of this guy. Stand up and be a man of integrity and honor. He promised "future, change, hope" - yet Obama is stucked in the past. Or shall I say, he now realized how hard it is to be the President of the most powerful country when Obama doesn't have all the knowledge to govern righteously and with strength coming from wisdom. His czars basically pulls him like a puppet – as he appears to not know what is going on in this country.

    Can we replace him with Hillary or Bill Clinton?

    January 7, 2010 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  12. Grahame

    This is so unusual Could you imagine Bush ever doing this. In fact when he was once asked if he had ever made a mistake he was stuck for an answer. Mind you if you said to Dick Rhubarb Chaney "Good Morning." he'd be stuck for an answer too. Same as his lunatic daughter.

    January 7, 2010 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  13. ted

    This is the hope and change that Obama promised. He will take responsibility as president and commander in chief. But he will also hold those responsible accountable for their lack of oversight and responsibility.

    this is a fresh change when comparing to the Bush administration.

    Thank you Barack. We appreciate you very much.

    January 7, 2010 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  14. Chris - Denver

    Nice to have a grown-up in charge for a change.

    January 7, 2010 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  15. Tia Lively

    "The President" will himself attempt to place blame on Pres Bush, no need to look for finger pointing within his own administration of people who can't read or write.

    January 7, 2010 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  16. John Boehner is like Cleopatra, only he bathes in Cheetos

    I can only hope the right wingnuts will stop being afraid of their own shadows. If they would just shut off Fox's Fat Bastard Hannity and Mini Me Beck, take a deep breath, and if Cheney would return to his subterranean bunker, everything will be OK.

    January 7, 2010 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  17. Tony in Florida

    Oh so since he is taking responsibility all is OK now.

    Please Odumbo needs to realize he is in WAY over his head. The idiots he owed becasue of the election are screwing this country up. He should do what is right or we will be decades correcting these policies.

    The 201o and 2012 election can't come fast enough.

    January 7, 2010 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  18. Dumb-o-CRAPS are runing America

    Wow, he admits a mistake after he's called on it again and again and again.

    January 7, 2010 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  19. James

    Sigh Obama, you give Americans too much credit.

    January 7, 2010 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  20. The Root Word of Progressive is Progress

    "The official said President Obama believes that previous administrations would "play hide the ball" and not come clean with the American people"

    Isn't that the truth! I'm so glad this man is in the White House. He may not do everything perfectly but he is about 550 times better than the Bush/Cheney team. Of course, even THIS will not satisfy the conserva-nuts.

    January 7, 2010 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  21. Thebe

    If this is true, the Prez just won back my respect! This is transformational leadership.

    "Transformational leadership" are not mere words. Look up the term if you don't know but would like to.

    January 7, 2010 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  22. Carmelle

    I challenge Bush and Cheney to take responsibility for 9/11!!! They collected the intelligence and still let over 3K ppl die!!

    Mr. President...Just focus. I know you got a lot to do while still having a family, but please FOCUS!

    January 7, 2010 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  23. Randy, San Francisco

    At least President Obama is man enough to take responsibility for mistakes. Did Bush/Cheney ever apologize for anything?

    January 7, 2010 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  24. Sniffit

    Haha...here's how it will work:

    1. He takes responsibility and gives an eloquent, well-reasoned and rational speach about what failed and what needs to be done to fix it, basically undermining and diffusing the talking point storm about incompetence yada yada yada.

    2. He says nobody is getting fired.

    3. GOP stops howling at the moon regarding incompetence and switches to howling at the moon about Napolitano's head needing to be served on a platter and how Obama not firing her is evidence of corruption and incompetence, etc.

    Pretty simple. GOP strategery: "Say anything"

    January 7, 2010 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  25. Sniffit

    Anyone want to take bets on which GOP senator will call for hearings on Napolitano's fitness to hold her job, etc.?

    January 7, 2010 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
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