Obama: “Skinny but tough”

October 27, 2009

obamatoughPresident Barack Obama had a message for his political friends and foes on Monday — “just because I’m skinny doesn’t mean I’m not tough.”

After weeks in which he has been angrily criticized by some on the right, to the point of creating a poster image of him with a Hitler mustache, Obama told a Democratic fund-raising event in Miami that some of his supporters have been expressing concern to him.

“I’ve tried to explain … just because I’m skinny doesn’t mean I’m not tough. I don’t rattle. I’m not going to shrink back, because now is the time for us to continue to push and follow through on those things that we know have to be done but have not been done in decades,” he said.

Obama was in Miami raising $1.5 million for Democratic congressional candidates for the 2010 elections, in which Democrats are seeking to hold onto their strong majorities in the House of Representatives and the Senate.

And he had tough words for those Republican critics who he says are not helping solve some of the problems that festered when they were in control of the White House and Congress.

“Lately I feel like somebody made a big mess and I’ve got my mop and I’m mopping the floor and the folks who made the mess are there (saying) ‘you’re not mopping fast enough. You’re not mopping the right way. It’s a socialist mop.'”

For more Reuters political coverage click here.

Photo credit:Reuters/Jim Young (Obama at Democratic congressional candidates fundraiser in Miami)


We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/

Absolutely. America should not jump to conclusions simply based on image.

Just because Obama is skinny, doesn’t mean he isn’t tough.

And just because he portrays himself as a political messiah during the election, doesn’t make him one.

And just because he said he would change things, doesn’t mean he actually will.

And just because he says he is humble, doesn’t automatically mean it is so.

Or perhaps I am going a bit further then he intended?

Posted by Anon | Report as abusive

I believe him to be a “Puppet” of the Oligarchs (The rich bankers that past administrations have sold you to as slaves).
The American people need to wake up to the fact that WHO he has surrounded himself are Marxist.
He is trying to fulfill an agenda of those far, far to the left. He was raised by his uncle who was a card caryying, self proclaimed Communist. Look it up!!!!
How about Anetta Dunn- favorite philosopher is Mao? This man killed millions of chinese…. PERIOD!!
Rahm Emanuel- Chief of Staff- He wants to produce “Youth Brigades” for a broader security system of America- That is Fascism. Old KGB system. He wants everyone watching what everyone is doing. Tell on your neighbor if they are speaking out about the Government- Simply remember that you and I are the Government….. Get it?
Wake up and do some RESEARCH on those who are surrounding him. It will shock you……….

Posted by John R. | Report as abusive

what is the saying about self recommendation?If he goes around telling everyone that he is tough,this unfortunately will only be credible for a while,his actions will determine how he is perceived.He has only been in office for 10months and the least visible attribute projected is his toughness.At the UN conference he certainly did not show any signs of toughness much to the exasperation of the french president.Now in fairness we have to give him time,but his appeasement and constant apology are not paying dividends in terms of benefits from our adversaries.

Posted by brian lee | Report as abusive

I love to be there one day but America should not jump to conclusions simply based on image.

Posted by sudhanshu | Report as abusive

I wouldn’t mind a messiah right now.
Give the man a break. It seems he’s trying to revive us from the many years of messes we have endured. Support his efforts to bring us back from the brink.

Posted by Anon | Report as abusive

Thank you Sir..

Rachit Bhargava

Posted by Rachit Bhargava | Report as abusive

Pres. Obama’s comparison to a man being obstructed during his mopping by the spillers is apt. He didn’t cause any of this mess. He’s just the one who has to clean it up. Let’s have some patience. As for the idiots who want to portray him as Hitler…no, if he were Hitler, he’d be capturing his enemies and torturing them, putting them into illegal camps and hidden prisons. Oh wait, I’m sorry, that wasn’t Hitler, that was Bush. Sorry.

Posted by Dave Ebert | Report as abusive

Yes, it’s a tuff job cleaning up the DUMP the Republicans took on America over the past 8 years.

Posted by Iwan | Report as abusive

Barack Obama is just one man. One man can do only so little if everyone else opposes him. Well… perhaps not everyone. Just half of the country. Now it’s time to play along. Those are the rules of the election. You vote, and afterwards you play along no matter who gets elected. It’s called democracy.

Posted by Anonymous | Report as abusive

Maybe those telling how to mop have some experience on cleaning up messes and instead of acting let you know better and thinking that you know better, maybe, just maybe, you ought to take a listen to them because all you seem to be listening and thinking what they are saying is criticism. You seem to forget that some of your friends, if not most of them, helped create that mess. They are willing to help do the wrong way because they don’t want to be blamed for any of it. Maybe if you really listen to all of those trying to help you so you don’t have another mess to clean up, you would hear some real thoughts on how to help you with that mop. However, you seem like that new kid on the block that nows a better way and these other guys who handled that mop before are watching nearby knowing you are cleaning it up all wrong and are trying to tell you so but you are just too much better than them to listen. and what is happening? That mess seems to getting bigger and bigger for you. You don’t have to be that new kid on the block that waits for that quiet wise old guy who takes you under your wing and tells you how they are all laughing at you because they remember when they were like you and some just aren’t going to help you while others are telling you they are helping you but are just trying to get on the new guys good side because he looks like he can do a good job but they don’t really care about cleaning up the mess as much as getting on your good side just in case you get lucky. But sooner or latter when they see you not able to clean this up they will walk away from you, as they are starting to now, and say to one another, I thought he knew something that we didn’t but he doesn’t. I’ll wait till someone else come along that can really knows what he is doing. Bye Bye Barack…see ya later

Posted by Don C | Report as abusive

And just because others portray him as a politcal messiah doesnt mean he believes he is one

And just because hes not changing things in your timeline doesnt mean hes not going too

And just because he worked hard to get where hes at doesn’t mean hes a spoiled rich kid like his predecessor was

Posted by silvio | Report as abusive

Obama tough?? He’s too thin skinned!!

Posted by WeimMom | Report as abusive

Much, too much rhetoric,we need ACTION…NOW…Rome is burning…no more fiddling around.

Posted by Helen Martin | Report as abusive

because I am FAT, does not mean I AM NOT SOFT.


Posted by Cho Ransome | Report as abusive

Best new Halloween Idea: Socialist Mop!!!

Posted by afuller | Report as abusive

[…] “Skinny but tough” — yep, that’s me too. We should really let him have more time to put America back on the road to decency. He’s not going to be able to do much, but a little positive progress is better than a lot of the negative kind. […]

Posted by Red-eyed bunnies on parade « serialdeviant.org(y) | Report as abusive

Yes indeed he certainly is tough as shoe leather alright. You have to be to lead a group of characters like Reid, Pelosi, Dodd, the entire group of congress, and the senate. I have never seen such a collection of criminals, thieves, opportunistic feeders. No ethics, no credibility, and mightly free with taxpayer money. No qualms about fleecing the american worker while lining their own pockets. We have become the laughing stock of the world as we are compromised as a nation secondary to Russia & China. We are rapidly on our way to a socialist regime. Thanks for compromising the people of this nation and throwing away the lives of all who have fought for this country.

Posted by Harry | Report as abusive

I am disgusted by the Reich-wing naysayers who actively hope our Obama (and thus our country) will fail. Obama was elected by a sea change; people who had given up on the political process voted – in some cases, for the first time in their lives, or perhaps for the first time in many years.

What Bush & Cheney (the ~real~ problem) did to our nation is nothing short of criminal. They should both be in the Hague, awaiting a trial for Crimes Against Humanity.

Obama and his team have an excruciatingly tough job; the problems that were created by the previous administration are vast. And every time they work on cleaning up the gawd-forsaken mess they inherited, the psychopathic trolls of the Reich-wing throw yet another temper tantrum and wet their panties, claiming it’s the end of the world.

My message to the Reich-wingers? Two words – “GROW UP!”

Posted by Jo | Report as abusive

Wait, weren’t there a lot of Democrats in the last government – and doesn’t it take a decade or so to reap benefits or losses? Seems like Bill Clinton took away the safeguards that let the banks kill the economy at home, and Bush opened the drain abroad by sending the very expensive military out to fight a traditional war against a guerrilla enemy. The deficit has tripled in just 10 months of Barack. No saint, he. Our grandkids will be cursing us for electing him as they stagger under our debtload.

Glad they’re not balancing our checkbooks –

Posted by rosemarie | Report as abusive

Mark my words, the President and the Stimulus Kids will prevail; we will succeed in bringing great change to America! All you naysayers are going to eat it! Wooo-Woooooo! Don’t make Barack angry, remember what happen on SNL? That was real.

Posted by EL PREZIDENTE KABOOM | Report as abusive

Cleaning up the mess the republicans left behind is a lot like using a mop without soap to clean up an oil spill about the size of the entire USA.

They need time, help and co-operation. They are getting all but 3 of those things.

If the leaders were not so greedy and corrupt it might be easier.

Posted by Barry | Report as abusive

This spate between Obama and the right wing is farcical. First off, Obama is no socialist. But the Nazi right wing of America screams whenever anyone suggests using taxpayer money to help the general population. The right wing never complains about the huge welfare in the form of contracts for weapons producers, who have bankrupted this country with over 60 years of wars against peasants and defenseless countries. Second, Obama’s policies have been little different than Bush’s, exacerbating polices that the Reaganites created.

Posted by Caise | Report as abusive

There is a larger problem in this country. Avoiding personal responsibility combined with a lack of memory will destroy this fragile democracy. Everyone including; Members of Congress, Governors, and Voters who fondled the last eight years of irresponsibility on both sides of the aisle, have forgotten that their march to war and low rate mortgages and compliance to war and low rate mortgages will have a very long ripple effect. There has been a changing of the guard. The past needs to spend some time reflecting on their enormous screw up, or at least admit to it, and give this guy a chance. Otherwise this country, not just the President, will fail.

Posted by Sanjiv | Report as abusive

I get the message. He knows he’s in over his head and more suited to being the White House janitor.

Posted by ed | Report as abusive

Okay, I’m kind of getting fed up with him. I know he’s inherited this big mess, but what happened? “Yes, we can” that confident man standing on stage. So bummed that I supported him. He’s no better than John McCain. I’m terribly disappointed to hear him repeatedly saying he’s got this big mess, blah blah. You should know this when you got this job. Obama, stop complaining like a little kid. Shut the republicans with your actions, not your mouth and your defense against defamation directed at you.

Posted by N | Report as abusive

Obama cleaning up someone else’s mess? He must be dreaming! He made most of this mess worse by wasting time with myriad issues near and dear to Big Labor’s agenda; issues that do not matter to anyone not in Big Labor’s pocket.
Grow up Barack- you are your own worst enemy.

Posted by David | Report as abusive

Obama’s tough…just in time for Halloween!

Posted by getsoadvice | Report as abusive

Good show. It’s all it really is anyway. A show. Our government has been covering it’s spending tracks for many many years much like the way Enron had. I think American politics are not too dissimilar to WWF wrestling, sure it takes some professionalism and great technique but in the end its all just a scripted show.

Posted by James Gooch | Report as abusive

It’s the press stupid.
And the corporate lobbyists that endorse a totally phony impression of reality.
Why have we spent all that taxpayer money on an OCCUPATION in the middle east? Doesn’t take a generous to work out that the war profiteers are making out like bandits.
The destruction of the Glass-Seagall act followed in 2000 by the creation of the laughingly named Commodity Futures Modernization Act, CFMC gave carte blanch to the boys in the investment banking houses to leverage themselves into eternity.
And again. Why aren’t the media asking questions?

Posted by jules | Report as abusive

Ask yourself this. Why would any leader need to make such a statement? The statement is an veiled admission that he IS weak and thin skinned.

Posted by WeMadeAmistake | Report as abusive

Lest we forget that the past three years we have been ruled by policies of the leftist controlled congress which both taxes and spends. Conservatism is on the ascendancy. You can thank the mindless corrupt DEMarxists and their incompetant bankrupt ideology. You can also thank the dishonesty that prevails in Washington and particulary the White House over the past nine months. Obama is a pathological liar and that dishonesty is fostering a resurrgence in American patriots who keep our constitution as a lighthouse.

Posted by WeMadeAmistake | Report as abusive

You all have got to be kidding me? Damn armchair politicians. If you don’t like what is doing, or not doing, get off your butts and do something about it. Is it any surprise that the government is making bad decisions? What do you expect when you – the average citizen – don’t stand up and speak your mind? You think the politicians lurk around reading blog comments? They’ve got more important things to do – like listen to those lobbyists who are actually talking to the politicians directly. No wonder this country is in so much trouble; the citizenry is too damn lazy/apathetic to get off of their lazy butts to actually do anything useful, but sure enough, they will whine and complain all day long.

Too busy? No one would listen? Just don’t really care? Blah, blah, blah. At least that “thin-skinned” president of ours is actually out there putting his neck on the line trying to do something positive. Don’t think so? Get out there and show him how it’s done then. Put up, or shut up.

Posted by Ken | Report as abusive

Judgement day. It is time for Obama to deliver something ?!?!. He still has 3 years to go. He better start showing some fruitful ideas. But he is a typical politician. Politicians are becoming living human fossils.

Posted by God | Report as abusive

The prisident has the majority in the House, Senate and almost the supreme court. With these mojorities, why is everyone blaming the Republicans. they don’t need the Republicans to pass any legislation at all. If things do not get changed the way Obama wants them, he is only to blame himself for not being able to convince his own party that he is correct.
When are you libs going to understand this and start blaming you own party for not passing His left wing views. Could it be possible that some Democrats that are not so left wing do not agree with him?

Posted by John Mullins | Report as abusive

all I hear is a bunch of mucho blah blah blah from all you naysaying, heathen Reptile Party, mooks. Truth is you can’t handle the truth that The Rock Obama can’t be stopped. Even with all of your propagandists working to destroy him, Obama wins round after round. What would have destroyed weaker candidates, has only given our President more and more strength. viva Obama! 4 more years in 2012!

Posted by Charles Hayden | Report as abusive

If these are the ideals that we as a populace are throwing back and forth at each other, we are so screwed. Fix your own and then worry about fixing your neighbor’s.

Posted by Larry | Report as abusive

When I was a young man, my father (a Republican) told me (a Democrat) that if it takes 20 years to get into trouble, it will take 20 years to get out of it. As far as I am concerned, nine months in office does not equate to 8 years of foolishness by the Cheney administration; excuse me, the Bush administration. I suggest that the far right and the far-out right cool it. Cheney/Bush have already demonstrated that their political strategies do not work.

Posted by Wayne Wieseler | Report as abusive

Hey Chuck

“all I hear is a bunch of mucho blah blah blah from all you naysaying, heathen Reptile Party, mooks.”

A fined tuned ear and years of good education have paid off for you, haven’t they???

Plug back into the Borg! Your programming awaits you.
The media is bought and paid for…the they have a cable for that USB port in the back of your head.

Posted by getsoadvice | Report as abusive

When and only when will the left quit blaming Bush and Cheney? Gas prices are on the rise again, wall street bankers are taking massive benefit packages now at taxpayer expense. Cap and trade policies only stand to hurt small businesses in the rust belts and where is all the money to come from for government healthcare? The barely surviving low income worker has to pay the increases for his utility bills to cover bad environmental policies such as cap and trade. The cash for clunker policies helped Toyota more than any domestic label and benefits will be short lived as sales drop back to realistic levels at the close of the program. Oh and have the wars stopped ?? In 2 and 3 and I’m sure beyond will it all still be the GOP’s fault? Get Real !!!

Posted by John | Report as abusive

Yupp, well obama say’s “I’ve tried to explain … just because I’m skinny doesn’t mean I’m not tough. I don’t rattle. I’m not going to shrink back, because now is the time for us to continue to push and follow through on those things that we know have to be done but have not been done in decades.” I ask how many decades? maybe 6 or so?


http://www.youtube.com/user/ChangeDaChan nel#p/a

http://www.youtube.com/user/TheAlexJones Channel

Posted by Watch Alex Jones’ FALL OF THE REPUBLIC’ | Report as abusive

Listen up you duped Alex Jones sheepheads, your man is a raving lunatic, not a credible new source. He reports anything he hears, whether it’s substantiated or not. You’ve got to stop taking what he says, seriously.
Viva Obama, viva the Republic!

Posted by EL PREZIDENTE KABOOM | Report as abusive

At this point, Obama suddenly awoke.

He realised that his presidency had just had a horrible nightmare.

The last year hadn’t happened. The public had never fallen for his crazy spin, he was never really president and he never got exposed as a fast talking fraud.

And he was still just a simple, humble and happy senator.

With that, he gave a relieved sigh and went back to sleep.

Posted by JohnisGood | Report as abusive

Campaining Obama “Yes We Can”

President Obama “Maybe we can if them low down republicans would just support me”

Washington House & Senate “No – you can’t”

The People response to the media “WHAT – I-I-I-I got to pay for it”

Posted by getsoadvice | Report as abusive

“When and only when will the left quit blaming Bush and Cheney?”

When we encounter problems that aren’t their fault. Most of the problems we face now ARE their fault, theirs and the rest of the right-wingers whose obsession with deregulation gave us the financial collapse, and whose delusions of reshaping the Middle East in their own image gave us the Iraq war.

Posted by RedXIV | Report as abusive


If you had the slightest clue how Congress works, you’d know that’s not true.

Posted by RedXIV | Report as abusive