10:24pm PT by Sophie Schillaci
President Obama and First Lady on 'The View': 'We Want Everyone to Thrive'
Making a joint appearance on ABC's The View, President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama discuss the economy, Michelle's (lack of) political aspirations and what the POTUS hopes to do at the end of his presidency.
The duo are quizzed by Barbara Walters on Tuesday's episode of the morning talker, in which the veteran journalist asks point blank: "What would be so terrible if Mitt Romney were elected?"
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The president responds: "I think America is so strong, and we’ve got so much going for us that we can survive a lot. But the American people don’t want to just survive, we want everyone to thrive.
"We want folks to have a shot at success, and so the question then just becomes, whose policies are more likely to lead us to where we want to go?"
Addressing Romney's proposed tax plan, Obama says: "Yesterday Gov. Romney on 60 Minutes was asked, does he think it’s fair that he pays a lower tax rate than somebody who’s making fifty thousand dollars a year, and he said 'yes, I think it’s fair and I also think that’s the way you get economic growth, the notion being that if people at the top have more income, they’ll invest and they’ll create jobs.'
"I’ve just got a different vision about how we grow an economy. I think, Barbara, that you grow an economy from the middle out, not from the top down, and that when the teacher and the bus driver and the receptionist and the office manager -- when they’ve got a little money in their pockets, when they’re doing well, then that means business has more customers, that business makes more profits, they hire more workers, and that’s been the history of our country, we grow fastest when the middle class is doing well and when folks who are trying to get into the middle class have ladders of opportunity," he continues. "So that’s a different vision about how we move the country forward, and ultimately it’s going to be up to the American people to make the decision about who’s got the better plan."
Quips the FLOTUS, "I'm voting for him."
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And while Michelle took center stage at the Democratic National Convention earlier this month, where she wowed viewers with her speech and beautiful wardrobe, the first lady says she has no political aspirations of her own.
"It takes a lot of patience to be the President of the United States and I’m not that patient. You know, I am not," she says.
Asked what he hopes to do with the rest of his life, Obama is careful not to get too far ahead of himself.
"Well, first things first here. We do have an election ahead and there are all kinds of things I want to do in a second term… Putting folks back to work and making sure our schools are up to snuff," he explains. "And we’ve got another war to wrap up. In a post-presidency, the thing that I think I would enjoy most is spending time working with kids. I love teaching. I miss teaching and I’m not sure necessarily it will be in a classroom, but the idea to be able to go around to various cities and helping to create mentorships and apprenticeships and just giving young people the sense of possibility."
The View airs Tuesday at 11 a.m. ET. According to a press release from ABC, the wide-ranging interview will also touch on the couple's relationship, family life inside the White House and the election itself.
Email: Sophie.Schillaci@thr.com; Twitter: @SophieSchillaci