January 4th, 2009
07:42 PM ET
13 years ago

Obama: 'I choked up'

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/01/04/art.bodepart0104.gi.jpg caption="President-elect Obama told reporters he got a little emotion Sunday as he left Chicago to move to Washington."]
(CNN) – President-elect Barack Obama showed a little of his softer side as he said his goodbyes to Chicago, the city that launched his political career, and headed to Washington to join his wife and two daughters.

“I choked up a little bit leaving my house today,” Obama told reporters as his flight prepared to depart.

The moment was brought on by a reminder of the years Obama and his family spent in the Windy City.

The president-elect told his traveling press corps that he got emotional because a friend of his oldest daughter, Malia, had dropped off a scrapbook of pictures to the Obama’s Chicago home.

“They had been friends since preschool and I just looked through the pages and the house was empty and it was a little tough,” Obama said. “It got me.”

The president-elect did not linger long enough to take any questions from reporters. Instead, he returned to his cabin in the aircraft where he ordered a cheeseburger and fries, according to Obama spokesman Robert Gibbs.

Before leaving Chicago, Obama also met Air Force Col. Scott Turner, who will pilot Air Force One once Obama is inaugurated.

“I am looking forward to seeing you guys in Washington,” Obama also told reporters before they boarded the plane.

WATCH: Obama lands in Washington

soundoff (471 Responses)
  1. Linda32

    Lee – I hope you choked on it.

    Ken – Sounds like you're not much of a Christian. One sin does not out weigh another, so what's up with your lying and jealousy. lol And how do you explain your Pres. and his "crimes"

    Pres Obama – Fired up and ready go!!!!!!

    January 4, 2009 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  2. David

    Obama?...He's historic alright. Many of us are hoping history repeats itself! Not my president....never will be.

    January 4, 2009 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  3. Paul

    To TCM and any other hater out there, willing to spew negativity energy, this close to Jan 20th,

    I pray for you, did you happen to read your post? Do you feel it is positive and supporting or completely off the wall negative? Charade? You would want to wish another human chokes, instead of being choked up?? We spent the last 8 yrs with worst President, this country has ever seen and not one time, did I or anyone close to me wish death on Bush, period.

    Very kind regards and I sincerely wish you luck in your life. Karma is a b..tch my friend and you cannot escape it!


    January 4, 2009 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |

    My prayers are with you, your family and the new administration. Keep the emails coming...to keep us informed. To God Be the Glory!

    January 4, 2009 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  5. delta mauler

    This United States is my Country and the President is my leader, I will continue to support my Country and my President with all my life force, as God is my witness.

    January 4, 2009 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  6. Simone

    Don't worry you twit.
    After you are impeached, you'll be back in Chicago soon enough.

    January 4, 2009 11:16 pm at 11:16 pm |
  7. NJVote08

    @ Mike, Syracuse NY

    You have a serious racial problem. Why bother to comment when everyone knows what you're going to say. You repeat your hatred so much that you sound like you are stuttering. Go get a life!

    January 4, 2009 11:17 pm at 11:17 pm |
  8. Wayland Yan

    How can you take Obama's critics seriously? They're the same ones who wanted to impeach Clinton for lying about a blow-job but yet forgive Bush for committing treason, supporting torture, and fabricating "intelligence" to start an unnecessary war that's cost the lives of over 700,000 innocent Iraqi civilians.

    Bush's catastrophic decision to invade has taken the lives of over 4000 U.S. service members and permanently crippled 30,000 more at a cost of 650 billion plus dollars and still climbing. Bin Ladin is still free and the terrorist threat is as omnipresent and by most expert accounts more widespread then before the Iraqi invasion.

    Under Bush's reign our national debt has increased by nearly three-fold from 3.8 to 11.0 TRILLION dollars and yet the economy is in one of it's worse slumps in U.S. history.

    Who'll ever forget "Mission Accomplished", "Bring it On", "Al Quaeda is in it's death throes", "Heckuva job Brownie", "He (Osama Bin Ladin)can run but he can't hide". Obama haters, i.e. Bush supporters not the sharpest tools in the toolbox.

    January 4, 2009 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  9. kevin

    Did you all see MY PRESIDENT on Air Force Craft today? Isn't he wonderful!?


    January 4, 2009 11:19 pm at 11:19 pm |
  10. Dem in Hawaii

    Should be interesting because Obama is just as dirty as all Chicago politicians. Remember the real estate deal? How about his home loan deal? No? Could it because the left press did not make an issue of it? What goes around comes around and I just hope we don't get another corrupt administration.

    January 4, 2009 11:19 pm at 11:19 pm |
  11. Beth

    OMG I just started crying all over again seeing that plane lift off and there was my President!

    January 4, 2009 11:20 pm at 11:20 pm |
  12. Lisa

    You kind of make me want to puke. Yes, Obama IS going to be President...get used to it and you'll see how America should be run. Too all the conservatives who can't seem to lose gracefully without spewing hatred ...if you can't beat 'em, join 'em and if you can't join 'em, go crawl under a rock.

    January 4, 2009 11:22 pm at 11:22 pm |
  13. NJVote08

    President Barack Obama... First Lady Michelle Obama... First Family! I am loving the sound of it! May God bless, protect and guide you in your presidency.

    January 4, 2009 11:22 pm at 11:22 pm |
  14. Bill

    I never thought I'd see this happen in my lifetime. I'm wishing health, strength and safety for him and his family.

    January 4, 2009 11:22 pm at 11:22 pm |
  15. Tolu

    God speed to Barack Obama, and to those who wish him ill, be warned. The Bible that you conservatives so venerate, yet seem to willfully misunderstand, informs us that God appoints all leaders; good and bad, some aof which are actually annointed by Him. Therefore, let no man curse, lest he be cursed.

    January 4, 2009 11:22 pm at 11:22 pm |
  16. arc, Lugano CH

    Lee January 4th, 2009 7:26 pm ET
    Yeah, I kind of choked up too when he left Chicago because it means he's actually going to be President. Kind of made me puke.
    Who urinated in your fruit loops this morning? You are one hateful 'Country First' Conservative. Go hang an effigy of President-Elect Obama from a tree, like your bigotry-filled kind in KY. Then maybe you'll feel better about yourself.

    January 4, 2009 11:23 pm at 11:23 pm |
  17. casey

    After the storm comes a rainbow

    January 4, 2009 11:23 pm at 11:23 pm |
  18. carol

    His Excellency President of the United States of America, Mr. Barack Obama...........

    January 4, 2009 11:24 pm at 11:24 pm |
  19. delta mauler

    God Speed Mr. President Elect, my life is yours. All patriots must support our President, who ever he may be, Duty, Honor, Country is the rule. Only cowards make excuses for the bad behavior of traitors.

    January 4, 2009 11:25 pm at 11:25 pm |
  20. Anonymous

    I'm confident that the president elect said: "looked through," rather than "looked thru."

    January 4, 2009 11:26 pm at 11:26 pm |
  21. Roberta

    Wow, all the hateful messages are astounding to me. What is up people? I didn't talk this bad about Bush when he took office the second time. Are you really all that racist? Or just anti-democrat across the board without giving anyone an chance? I'm betting racist more than anything and it just makes me sick.

    January 4, 2009 11:26 pm at 11:26 pm |
  22. 30m-PA-voted Clinton then McCain

    Nothing ever Changes,

    Give Obama a chance? I've listened to this guy for over a year and he is nothing more than another crooked politician. Not only that, but the media have let him get away with a lot that most people are unaware of. I read these blogs and I just can't believe so many people who somehow think Obama is this new type of politician. It's like these people have been sleeping for the past year. Wake up! Obama did not win the presidency on his own merits.

    January 4, 2009 11:27 pm at 11:27 pm |
  23. xylo

    The national nightmare of the Bush Crime Family, Cheney, and the GOP majority is going to be over and not soon enough!

    January 4, 2009 11:28 pm at 11:28 pm |
  24. New Yorker

    I, too, choked up when Obama won the election. Even McCain and Palin would have been far better than him and Biden. Ah well, time will prove it.

    January 4, 2009 11:28 pm at 11:28 pm |
  25. honestly

    WELCOME, President Obama,
    We have been waiting a very long time for you!

    January 4, 2009 11:28 pm at 11:28 pm |
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