Obama was broke, had credit card declined, before presidency
Prior to his presidency, Barack Obama was just like us.
Before rising to fame as the keynote speaker at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, and after running a losing campaign, he was broke and got his credit card declined.
In a recent interview with David Axelrod, President Obama revealed that after he lost the Democratic primary for the Illinois 1st congressional district in 2000, he was feeling anything but good. He had spent all of his money on his campaign and had a wife and child at home with another on the way.
After his political loss, he was seriously considering a career unrelated to politics.
When a friend asked him to come to the Democratic National Convention in Los Angeles, he decided to go. When he got there, he tried to rent a car only to have his credit card declined.
The day only went downhill from there.
“I get to the hotel where my friend is ready to go and we go over to the convention and they give me the pass that basically only allows you to be in the halls. The ring around the auditorium doesn’t actually allow you to see anything,” Obama said.
He was even turned away from multiple post-convention parties after going unrecognized.
“I felt as if I was a third wheel in this whole thing,” Obama told Axelrod. “I ended up leaving early, and that was the stage when I was really questioning whether I should be in politics.”
After that experience, he actually saw a path to victory for himself, and just four years later, he was the keynote speaker at the convention. His speech is what marked him as an up-and-coming star in the party.
“If you had won that congressional race,” Axelrod said during the interview, “we wouldn’t be sitting in the Roosevelt Room right now.”