Obama Defends Vacationing in Down Economy

After a wide-ranging interview of President Obama, "CBS Evening News" anchor Katie Couric strolled along with him outside the White House and asked him a question suggested to her by someone on Twitter -- on whether he feels "guilty going on vacation when so many families are struggling."

Mr. Obama and his family plan to take a break in Martha's Vineyard next month.

"If the question is, 'Do I think every single day about the hardships that people are going through'? Absolutely," the president responded. "Do I think the American people think that because of those hardships I shouldn't spend some quality time with my daughters? I don't think that's what the American people think about it."

Couric then observed, "You're so confident, Mr. President. And so focused. Is your confidence ever shaken, do you ever wake up and say, 'Damn, this is hard! Damn, I'm not going to get the things done that I want to get done,' and it's just too politicized to get anything done?"

Mr. Obama's response? "Are there days where I say, 'This is a big dose'? Absolutely. Are there days where, you know, I think we've suffered setbacks and I've got to continually question and reexamine how I'm approaching problems, all the time. You know, there's a constant process of reevaluation in it, and self reflection that the job forces on you. But this country just makes me confident. I have faith that in the end we will do what's right for the next generation."

Couric's interview covered the battle over healthcare reform, the economy, joblessness, abortion funding and other key issues.



To read a transcript of the interview, click here..

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