Obama on the 'mistake of my first term'
July 12th, 2012
05:40 PM ET
3 years ago

Obama on the 'mistake of my first term'

(CNN) - President Barack Obama acknowledged in a Thursday interview that he put policy ahead of messaging in his first years as president, and could be more effective at "explaining but also inspiring" if reelected to a second term.

"It's funny – when I ran, everybody said, well he can give a good speech but can he actually manage the job?" Obama said in the CBS News interview. "In my first two years, I think the notion was, 'Well, he's been juggling and managing a lot of stuff, but where's the story that tells us where he's going?' And I think that was a legitimate criticism."

– Follow the Ticker on Twitter: @PoliticalTicker

– Check out the CNN Electoral Map and Calculator and game out your own strategy for November.

In his Thursday interview, Obama acknowledged that he could do a better job on the "inspiration" front.

"The mistake of my first term – couple of years – was thinking that this job was just about getting the policy right," Obama said. "And that's important. But the nature of this office is also to tell a story to the American people that gives them a sense of unity and purpose and optimism, especially during tough times."

A second Obama term, he said, would involve "getting out of this town, spending more time with the American people, listening to them and also then being in a conversation with them about where do we go together as a country."

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney issued a statement in response, saying, "President Obama believes that millions of Americans have lost their homes, their jobs and their livelihood because he failed to tell a good story. Being president is not about telling stories. Being president is about leading, and President Obama has failed to lead. No wonder Americans are losing faith in his presidency."


Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (197 Responses)
  1. FunnyMitt
    July 12, 2012 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  2. Donkey Party
    July 12, 2012 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  3. jay
    July 12, 2012 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  4. Hojo
    July 12, 2012 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  5. harryinitiative
    July 12, 2012 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  6. TPF
    July 12, 2012 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  7. 1Joyce
    July 12, 2012 08:53 pm at 8:53 pm |
  8. Jeff
    July 12, 2012 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
  9. big sosa
    July 12, 2012 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  10. big sosa
    July 12, 2012 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  11. n
    July 12, 2012 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  12. savethechildren
    July 12, 2012 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  13. Proud to be a Democrat
    July 12, 2012 10:45 pm at 10:45 pm |
  14. Mike
    July 12, 2012 10:48 pm at 10:48 pm |
  15. Bill in CA.
    July 12, 2012 10:50 pm at 10:50 pm |
  16. Candice
    July 12, 2012 10:51 pm at 10:51 pm |
  17. RightyTighty
    July 13, 2012 12:21 am at 12:21 am |
  18. Anonymous
    July 13, 2012 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  19. Econosquire
    July 13, 2012 12:26 am at 12:26 am |
  20. MCSNZ
    July 13, 2012 12:35 am at 12:35 am |
  21. Dont get sick becuz i am RICH
    July 13, 2012 12:38 am at 12:38 am |
  22. Guest
    July 13, 2012 12:49 am at 12:49 am |
  23. Balls McGhee
    July 13, 2012 01:02 am at 1:02 am |
  24. Chris
    July 13, 2012 01:02 am at 1:02 am |
  25. Thomas
    July 13, 2012 01:04 am at 1:04 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8