Historian Doris Kearns Goodwin has a great new interview with President Obama in Vanity Fair. In the wide-ranging interview, they discuss Abraham Lincoln, Obama’s biggest regrets from his time in office, and how a visit to the pyramids reminded Obama that cable news doesn’t really matter.
But perhaps the most intriguing bit was when, in a brief discussion of Obama’s plans for his post-presidency, Obama hinted that he planned to start speaking out more like an activist than a president.
There are “things,” he told Goodwin, “that in some ways I suspect I’m able to do better out of this office.” He elaborated that because of the “institutional constraints” of the presidency, “there are things I cannot say.”
He went on to essentially say he wanted to use his post-presidential bully pulpit more like an activist than a venerable elder statesman. “There are institutional obligations I have to carry out that are important for a president of the United States to carry out, but may not always align with what I think would move the ball down the field on the issues that I care most deeply about,” he said.
And while vague, this is an intriguing hint that Obama is thinking about being a very different ex-president than we’ve been used to.
“Every day as I get older, I appreciate women more and more. When you’re between the ages of 15 and 19, maybe you see women as competition, as opposed to lifesavers and people that hold your hand and have experienced pretty much everything that you have. So the more women in my life the better.”- Adele for Vanity Fair.
It is so easy to talk to her and be around her. She’s funny as hell and her comebacks are legendary. The most beautiful thing about Adele is that she has her priorities straight. She is a gracious woman and the most humble human being I’ve ever met. - Beyoncé about Adele for Vanity Fair.