Obama: My White House 'Didn't Have a Scandal That Embarrassed Us'

Former President Barack Obama / Getty Images
February 27, 2018

Former President Barack Obama said in a private speech Friday that his White House never endured any scandals that embarrassed it.

Obama spoke for an hour at a sports policy conference hosted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Although the speech was off-the-record, the libertarian magazine Reason received an audio recording of his remarks and published them in full this week.

The former president hit upon a wide variety of topics, including his views on basketball (he supports creating a junior league for the NBA, instead of the NCAA), and equal pay for women (Obama called on companies to step up, or risk being surpassed by their competitors).

At one point, Obama went on an extended anecdote about playing basketball with different people, and how some people were better at putting team first and prioritizing the success of the group.

"One of the things I'm proud of in my administration was the fact that—and I think these things are connected—we didn't have a scandal that embarrassed us," he then said.

"There were mistakes, we'd screw up. But there wasn't anything venal in eight years. I know that seems like a low bar," Obama said to laughter.

"Generally speaking, you didn't hear about a lot of drama inside our White House," he continued, insisting it was because he selected people with the right temperament.

Listen to Obama's full remarks below:

Published under: Barack Obama , White House