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W.H. releases transcript of 'off-the-record' paper interview


Following some minor controversy, the White House gave the O.K. for the Des Moines Register to release the transcript of their previously off-the-record interview with President Obama.

The Iowa paper's editor wrote a blog post yesterday saying Obama had called to ask for an endorsement but had asked that the call be "off-the-record." Rick Green, the editor, agreed to the terms but wrote in his post that Obama's comments in the interview would have been "well-received" by undecided voters.

The interview is fairly standard information articulated by Obama at campaign rallies and in the presidential debates.

But here's part of what Obama said when asked why the paper should endorse him:

THE PRESIDENT: Well, you guys have seen me up close. I wouldn’t be on the national stage had it not been for the people of Iowa. And if you look at what I said to you this time four years ago, and the commitments I’ve made, I have kept and met those commitments, or I have worked really hard to keep them and meet them. ...

I got to tell you, I feel very strongly that I have a record that justifies a second term. But I guess, more importantly, what you also know is that I’m somebody who keeps my word, that I don’t read the polls, that I do what I think is right for the American people, even when it is profoundly unpopular politically. And I think that’s worth something. I think that’s the kind of leadership the people of Iowa want.

Full transcript here.

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