Obama Gives Himself an "Incomplete"

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Sept. 4 2012 9:48 AM

Obama Grades Himself on the Economy: "Incomplete"

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A poster of campaign pins for President Obama at the American Presidential Experience exhibit in Charlotte, N.C.

Photograph by Brendan Smialowski/AFP/GettyImages.

"You know I would say 'incomplete.' "

That was President Obama's response to a question from a local Colorado TV reporter on Monday about what grade he thinks he deserves for how he handled the economy during his first term. We've embedded the clip below given that the "incomplete" quote is making the rounds online, and is already drawing fire from Republicans who say a president's handling of the economy is a pass/fail proposition.

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For what it's worth, here's the second-half of Obama's response (which is missing from some clips/recaps): "But what I would say is the steps that we've taken in saving the auto industry and making sure that college is more affordable and investing in clean energy and science and technology and research those are all the things that we're going to need to grow over the long term."

And here was the question: "Your party says you inherited a bad situation—you've had three and a half years to fix it—what grade would you give yourself so far for doing that?"

Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City. 

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