Later, when asked to identify his biggest failure as president, Obama first named immigration reform, and then mentioned his failure “to change the tone in Washington.” “I think that I’ve learned some lessons over the last four years, and the most important lesson I’ve learned is that you can’t change Washington from the inside. You can only change it from the outside,” Obama said.
But Obama didn’t “learn” this while he was in office. He came into office on a platform of changing Washington from the outside. That was one of his biggest debates with Hillary Clinton during the 2008 primary. She said Democrats needed an insider like her to make change in Washington while Obama said he would bring change from the outside.
He’s had four years to do it. By his own admission, it hasn’t happened. How will the next four years be any different? Obama can’t answer that question because he can’t even acknowledge he’s already tried, and failed, to change Washington from the outside.
Obama is clearly a very strong candidate when he sticks to scripted events like the Democratic National Convention. But when pressed on his record, his off the cuff responses are disastrous. We’ll see if he improves before the debates.