One of the president's core messages in his afternoon press conference today was one of "taking responsibility" for the frustration of voters, as manifested in last night's elections.
He used the phrase six times during the course of the hour-long news conference.
- On economic progress: "Clearly too many Americans haven't felt that progress yet, and they told us that yesterday. And, as president, I take responsibility for that."
- On jobs: "I think I've got to take direct responsibility for the fact that we have not made as much progress as we need to make."
- On fulfilling his promise of "change:" "One of the things that I've got to take responsibility for is not having moved enough on those fronts."
- On transparency: "I think the American people want to see more transparency, more openness. As I said, in the midst of economic crises, I think one of the things I take responsibility for is not having pushed harder on some of those issues."
- On Democratic losses last night: "There's also a lot of questioning on my part in terms of, "Could I have done something differently or done something more so that those folks would still be here?' It's hard. And I take responsibility for it in a lot of ways."
- On the business community: "I've to take responsibility in terms of making sure that I make clear to the business community as well as to the country that the most important thing we can do is to boost and encourage our business sector and make sure that they're hiring."