Big Lines From Obama's Farewell Address

'You made me a better man'
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 10, 2017 8:51 PM CST
Updated Jan 11, 2017 12:03 AM CST
Big Lines From Obama's Farewell Address
President Obama speaks at McCormick Place in Chicago Tuesday.   (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

President Obama delivered what was billed as his farewell speech to the nation Tuesday, one interrupted early with chants of "four more years" from the crowd in Chicago. "I can't do that," he responded. Some of the biggest applause lines, with the full text via the AP.

  • "Tonight is time for me to say thanks. You made me a better president. And you made me a better man."
  • "I've said it and I mean it: If anyone can put together a better (health care) plan that is demonstrably better than the improvements we've made to our health care system ... I will publicly support it."
  • “For every two steps forward, it often feels we take one step back. But the long sweep of America has been defined by forward motion, a constant widening of our founding creed to embrace all, and not just some.”

  • "After my election, there was talk of a post-racial America. Such a vision, however well-intended, was never realistic. Race remains a potent and often divisive source in our society. ... All of us have more work to do."
  • "We need to uphold laws against discrimination ... but laws alone won’t be enough. Hearts must change."
  • "Without bolder action, our children won't have time to debate the existence of climate change. They'll be busy dealing with its effects."
  • "Just as we, as citizens, must remain vigilant against external aggression, we must guard against a weakening of the values that make us who we are. ... That's why I reject discrimination against Muslim Americans. ..."
  • "If you're tired of arguing with strangers on the internet, try to talk with one in real life."
  • To his wife: "You took on a role you didn't ask for and made it your own with grace and with grit and with style and good humor. You made the White House a place that belongs to everybody."
  • To his daughters: "Of all that I have done in my life, I am most proud to be your dad."
  • To Joe Biden: "I gained a brother."
  • "We're on live TV here. I've gotta move." (After an initial thunderous ovation.)
  • "Yes we can. Yes we did. Yes we can."
(Read more President Obama stories.)

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