With less than a week left in the White House, President Barack Obama believes his family is ready to move on.
In an excerpt from an interview with CBS’ “60 Minutes,” released Friday, Obama said his wife, Michelle, and daughters, Malia and Sasha, have grown tired of life inside the White House bubble.
“They’re ready to go,” he said. “I mean, the girls, obviously, you know, they are now of an age in which the constraints of Secret Service and bubbles and all that stuff has gotten pretty old.”
“Michelle never fully took to the scrutiny. I mean, she’s thrived as a first lady, but it’s not her preference,” he said. “She never fully embraced being in the public spotlight, which is ironic given how good she is.”
Michelle Obama expressed a similar sentiment in an interview with Vogue in November.
“The nature of living in the White House is isolating,” she said. “And I think Barack and I — because we’re kind of stubborn — we’ve maintained some normalcy, mostly because of the age of our kids. I go out to dinner with my girlfriends; I go to Sasha’s games; Barack has coached a little basketball with Sasha’s team. But at the same time, when you can’t walk into CVS?”
While the family is looking forward to the next stage of their lives, President Obama said it is bittersweet to leave their home of the last eight years.
“We just have a lot of memories here,” he said in the “60 Minutes” clip. “Our kids grew up here. Some of our best friends have been made here in this place. There have been moments that were highlights for us that are going to be hard to duplicate.”
The Obama family will remain in Washington as Sasha, who is 15, completes high school. Malia is set to attend Harvard in the fall. And both the president and the first lady have said they’ll remain engaged in public life in some way.
CBS will air the full “60 Minutes” interview on Sunday, marking the final major network TV interview of Obama’s presidency.