Obama discusses racism, avoids Trump talk on Letterman's new show
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Former President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaIntelligence for the days after President Trump leaves office Barack Obama sends Valentine's message to Michelle: 'She does get down to Motown' For 2020, Democrats are lookin’ for somebody to love MORE opens up about everything from racism to sending his daughter off to college in an interview with David Letterman, billed as Obama's first TV talk show appearance since leaving the White House.

But the one topic Obama doesn’t get into: President TrumpDonald John TrumpBill Kristol resurfaces video of Pence calling Obama executive action on immigration a 'profound mistake' ACLU says planned national emergency declaration is 'clear abuse of presidential power' O'Rourke says he'd 'absolutely' take down border wall near El Paso if he could MORE.

The former president is the inaugural guest on Letterman's new Netflix show, “My Next Guest Needs no Introduction,” premiering Friday.

“I slept in, which I was pretty happy about,” Obama, 56, told Letterman about the morning of Jan. 21, 2017, the day after he left the White House.


“You know, it was great. I did not miss the trappings of the office,” Obama told the former “Late Show” host during the hourlong interview.

“I think there was a sense that I had run the race, I had completed it. I was proud of the work we had done and I was ready for the next stage.”

While the topics du jour don't include the current president, Obama dishes on a variety of subjects during the course of the wide-ranging conversation — including one of his facial features.

“She was very proud of the fact that my eyebrows were strong,” Obama says of his mother, quipping, “Which is an important asset that I’ve now passed along to my daughters.”

His two daughters, Sasha and Malia, are mentioned several times during the interview.

Obama recalls being so weepy when he dropped 19-year-old Malia at college last year that he couldn’t manage to put together a do-it-yourself item for his daughter’s Harvard University dorm room.

“I was basically useless. And everybody had seen me, you know, crying and misting up for the previous three weeks,” Obama said with a grin.

“Malia, who’s very thoughtful, she says, ‘Hey, Dad. You know I’ve got this lamp in this box. So put the desk lamp together?’”

“So I grab it. And it should’ve taken like five minutes or three minutes. It only had like four parts or something,” Obama recalled. “And I’m sitting there and I’m just toiling away at this thing and it’s taken half an hour.”

“I was just pretty pathetic,” he said to laughs from the audience.

The talk also turns serious at times, with Letterman discussing race relations at length with Obama.

“It turns out that we come up with all kinds of reasons to try to put ourselves over other people,” Obama says. “Racism is a profound example of that, but obviously biologically there’s no actual reality to it other than we made this thing up. We made it up.”

The only time that Trump’s name is uttered throughout the program is when Letterman travels to Selma, Ala., to speak with civil rights figure Rep. John LewisJohn LewisThe Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Kidney Care Partners — Lawmakers scramble as shutdown deadline nears Bill Clinton jokes no one would skip Dingell's funeral: 'Only time' we could get the last word Biden eulogizes Dingell: 'Dignity was how John walked. Dignity was how John talked' MORE (D-Ga.) and asks about the lawmaker’s decision not to attend the 45th president’s inauguration.

“Without being just flat-out specific about this, how big a setback is the current administration?” Letterman asks.

“It is a major setback to the hopes, the dreams and aspirations of a people,” Lewis, 77, replies. “Not just African-Americans, but all Americans. because I think what has happened in America today is a threat not just to our own country, but to the planet.”

Letterman, 70, and Obama have a history together — the former commander in chief appeared on the “Late Show” eight times. Letterman, who’s been a vocal critic of Trump, stepped down as longtime host of the CBS show in 2015.

Letterman concludes the chat with the first guest on his show by telling Obama, “Without a question of a doubt, you are the first president I truly and fully respect.”