I Don’t Go to a Lot of Washington Parties: Obama Blames Press for Cold and Aloof Image

AP

President Barack Obama blames the press for creating the image that he’s “cold and aloof,” according to a new interview with Time magazine.

The reason? He doesn’t “go to a lot of Washington parties” and “mix enough with them”:

My suspicion is that this whole critique has to do with the fact that I don’t go to a lot of Washington parties. And as a consequence, the Washington press corps maybe just doesn’t feel like I’m in the mix enough with them, and they figure, well, if I’m not spending time with them, I must be cold and aloof.

The fact is, I’ve got a 13-year-old and 10-year-old daughter, and so, no, Michelle and I don’t do the social scene, because as busy as we are, we have a limited amount of time, and we want to be good parents at a time that’s vitally important for our kids.

Obama made his comments to Fareed Zakaria, the magazine’s editor at large, and also addressed his difficulties in working with Congress, blaming a lack of bipartisanship.

“You know, the truth is, actually, when it comes to Congress, the issue is not personal relationships,” he said. “The reason we’re not getting enough done right now is you’ve got a Congress that is deeply ideological and sees a political advantage in not getting stuff done.”

He continued, “[House Speaker] John Boehner and I get along fine. We had a great time playing golf together. That’s not the issue. The problem was that no matter how much golf we played or no matter how much we yukked it up, he had trouble getting his caucus to go along with doing the responsible thing on a whole bunch of issues over the past year.”

In November, Boehner called his relationship with the president “pretty good” on the whole, though admitted things had grown “a little frosty.”