President Barack Obama suggested in a Sunday interview that voters have grown a little tired of his presidency and will want a newer, fresher candidate to succeed him.
“I think the American people, they’re gonna want that new car smell,” Obama said on ABC’s “This Week,” according to a transcript. “They wanna drive something off the lot that doesn’t have as much mileage as me.”
Obama made the comments while addressing the potential candidacy of Hillary Clinton, the Democratic front-runner in the 2016 contest. Though Clinton served in his administration as secretary of state, Obama said voters should expect her to offer some disagreements with his presidency.
“If she decides to run, I think she will be a formidable candidate and I think she’d be a great president,” Obama said. “And she’s not gonna agree with me on everything. And one of the benefits of running for president is you can stake out your own positions. You have a clean slate. A fresh start. You know, when you’ve been president for six years, you’ve got some dings.”
Obama stopped short of endorsing her campaign, however, and said other Democrats would also be “terrific” successors.
“She hasn’t announced so I don’t wanna jump the gun. I can tell you a couple things. Number one, she was an outstanding secretary of State. Number two, she’s a friend,” Obama said. “Number three, I think she and a number of other possible Democratic candidates would be terrific presidents.”
Transcript text lightly edited for clarity.
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