Obama to Harry: 'Serenity' on the Day I Left Office

Prince interviews former president for BBC in the first since he left the White House
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Dec 27, 2017 6:44 AM CST

Former President Obama told Prince Harry in a BBC interview broadcast Wednesday that despite the sense that much important work remained unfinished on the day he left the White House, "there was a serenity there, more than I would have expected." Obama said it's "hugely liberating" to be able to set his own agenda in the morning and have time to talk with his wife, Michelle, in his post-presidency. He spoke with Harry in the prince's capacity as guest editor of the BBC Radio 4 news program, reports the AP. The interview, recorded in Canada in September, was Obama's first since leaving the Oval Office in January. "I miss the work itself because it was fascinating," Obama said of his eight years, citing health care reform as one of his proudest achievements. He did not mention his successor, but did say government officials should be careful in using social media.

Harry also focused on climate change, the military, mental health, and asked Obama a "lightning round" of questions. The former president declined to say whether he wears boxers or briefs, but prefers Aretha Franklin to Tina Turner—"Aretha is the best"—and favors basketball star Michael Jordan over LeBron James. Obama also said he is "obsessed" with helping to train the next generation of leaders. As for the elephant in the room—whether Harry will invite Obama to his May wedding to Meghan Markle—Mashable notes that the prince deferred, saying, "Well, I don't know about that. We haven't put the invites or the guest list together yet, so who knows whether he's going to be invited or not. Wouldn't want to ruin that surprise." He did say Markle enjoyed her first Christmas as a guest of Queen Elizabeth II. "She really enjoyed it, and the family loved having her there."

(Read more Prince Harry stories.)

We use cookies. By Clicking "OK" or any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. Read more in our privacy policy.
Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.