Yet Mr. Obama also expresses exasperation. In private, he has talked longingly of “going Bulworth,” a reference to a little-remembered 1998 Warren Beatty movie about a senator who risked it all to say what he really thought. While Mr. Beatty’s character had neither the power nor the platform of a president, the metaphor highlights Mr. Obama’s desire to be liberated from what he sees as the hindrances on him.
“Probably every president says that from time to time,” said David Axelrod, another longtime adviser who has heard Mr. Obama’s movie-inspired aspiration. “It’s probably cathartic just to say it. But the reality is that while you want to be truthful, you want to be straightforward, you also want to be practical about whatever you’re saying.”
"For Rey, the only guy that ever hit the president and never got arrested. Barack."
— Barack Obama’s inscription on a series of photos showing Reynaldo Deceraga elbowing the president in the mouth during a 2010 basketball game. Deceraga was not invited to play with Obama again. (via The Boston Globe)
As part of their “Person of the Year” issue, Time Magazine publishes several photos from White House photographer Pete Souza—including the one above, which shows the president working on his speech about the school shooting in Newtown (via Lightbox).
Mitt Romney and Barack Obama are being far more aggressive on the debate stage tonight. According to the print pooler inside the room, there was an “audible gasp” inside the hall during this moment of the debate. (Photos by Bruce Bennett and Spencer Platt/Getty Images)