Last night, millions of Americans tuned in to watch President Obama offer them his farewell address before he parts ways with the White House to make way for his predecessor Donald J. Trump.
In it, he thanked his family for their support as he stood as leader of the free world and outlined the highs and lows of his presidency.
Fortunately, the praise he received for his speech was undisturbed by news of Trump’s alleged penchant for “Golden Showers” on social media.
My fellow Americans, Michelle and I have been so touched by all the well-wishes that we’ve received over the past few weeks. But tonight it’s my turn to say thanks.
Whether we have seen eye-to-eye or rarely agreed at all, my conversations with you, the American people — in living rooms and in schools; at farms and on factory floors; at diners and on distant military outposts — those conversations are what have kept me honest, and kept me inspired, and kept me going. And every day, I have learned from you. You made me a better president, and you made me a better man.
So I first came to Chicago when I was in my early twenties, and I was still trying to figure out who I was; still searching for a purpose to my life. And it was a neighborhood not far from here where I began working with church groups in the shadows of closed steel mills.
It was on these streets where I witnessed the power of faith, and the quiet dignity of working people in the face of struggle and loss.