What are some famous Barack Obama quotes?

Updated: 8/17/2019
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12y ago

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Some of the more well known quotes from President Obama are:

It's only when you hitch your wagon to something larger than yourself that you will realize your true potential.

I don't oppose all wars. And I know that in this crowd today, there is no shortage of patriots, or of patriotism. What I am opposed to is a dumb war. What I am opposed to is a rash war.

A good compromise, a good piece of legislation, is like a good sentence, or a good piece of music. Everybody can recognize it. They say, "Huh. It works. It makes sense."

Americans still believe in an America where anything's possible - they just don't think their leaders do.

There are patriots who opposed the war in Iraq and there are patriots who supported the war in Iraq. We are one people, all of us pledging allegiance to the stars and stripes, all of us defending the United States of America.

Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.

In the unlikely story that is America, there has never been anything false about hope.

Yes we can!

I'm so overexposed, I'm making Paris Hilton look like a recluse.

I think it is fair to say that when it comes to my presidency, the honeymoon is over. For example, some people now suggest that I'm too professorial. And I'd like to address that head-on, by assigning all of you some reading that will help you draw your own conclusions. Others say that I'm arrogant. But I've found a really great self-help tool for this: my poll numbers.

No one is pro-abortion.

It's time for change!

Americans still believe in an America where anything's possible - they just don't think their leaders do.

Greatness must be earned.

We've got a story to tell that isn't just against something, but is for something.

OK, look, you know, when I was a kid, I inhaled frequently... That was the point.

I recognize there is a certain presumptuousness in this, a certain audacity, to this announcement. I know that I haven't spent a lot of time learning the ways of Washington, but I've been there long enough to know that the ways of Washington must change. People who love their country can change it.

After a century of striving, after a year of debate, after a historic vote, health care reform is no longer an unmet promise. It is the law of the land.

Do we participate in a politics of cynicism or a politics of hope?

Contrary to the claims of some of my critics and some of the editorial pages, I am an ardent believer in the free market.

The fact that my 15 minutes of fame has extended a little longer than 15 minutes is somewhat surprising to me and completely baffling to my wife.

There's not a liberal America and a conservative America - there's the United States of America.

We have an obligation and a responsibility to be investing in our students and our schools. We must make sure that people who have the grades, the desire and the will, but not the money, can still get the best education possible.

I don't know (not having been there and not seeing all the facts), what role race played in that. But I think it's fair to say...that the Cambridge police acted stupidly.

It's not surprising, then, they get bitter. They cling to guns, or religion, or antipathy to people who aren't like them, or anti-immigrant sentiment, or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.

I'm proud of the fact that I stood up early and unequivocally in opposition to Bush's foreign policy (and was the only U.S. Senate candidate in Illinois to do so). That opposition hasn't changed.

I cannot swallow whole the view of Lincoln as the Great Emancipator.

We can't drive our SUVs and eat as much as we want and keep our homes on 72 degrees at all times...and then just expect that other countries are going to say OK. That's not leadership. That's not going to happen.

The Bush Administration's failure to be consistently involved in helping Israel achieve peace with the Palestinians has been both wrong for our friendship with Israel, as well as badly damaging to our standing in the Arab world.

My job is not to represent Washington to you, but to represent you to Washington.

In the face of impossible odds, people who love their country can change it.

I believe marriage is between a man and a woman. I am not in favor of gay marriage. But when you start playing around with constitutions, just to prohibit somebody who cares about another person, it just seems to me that's not what America's about. Usually, our constitutions expand liberties, they don't contract them. [His position has now changed and he thinks gay marriage OK and right per the Constitution.]


I've now been in 57 states -- I think one left to go.

Let me be absolutely clear. Israel is a strong friend of Israel's. It will be a strong friend of Israel's under a McCain...administration. It will be a strong friend of Israel's under an Obama administration. So, that policy is not going to change."

We're the country that built the Intercontinental Railroad.

My friends, we live in the greatest nation in the history of the world. I hope you'll join with me as we try to change it.

The reforms we seek would bring greater competition, choice, savings and inefficiencies to our health care system.

On this Memorial Day, as our nation honors its unbroken line of fallen heroes -- and I see many of them in the audience here today -- our sense of patriotism is particularly strong.


Some quotes may be taken out of context and imply other than the original quote intended.

Every quote in this answer has not yet been validated for accuracy. When finding online quotes, be careful to only use websites that are reliable and verifiable. Sadly, there are a number of fake quotes circulating, mostly on the websites of his political opponents. While being an opponent is not a problem, it is not ethical to put words in his mouth that he never said. A good website for checking whether a quote about the president is fake or not is

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Q: What are some famous Barack Obama quotes?
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