President Obama Opens Up on Fatherhood, Weighs in on Weiner Scandal, in Exclusive Interview


'I Can't Say I Miss My Father'

"Make sure you're not bashful about asking for support and help from friends and family that you love," he said, adding that that's what his wife did when he was away campaigning and she had to take care of their children by herself.

Responding to another question from Kyle Mazer, an 11-year-old Little League player from Millburn, NJ, who wanted to know whether the president missed his father on Father's Day, he replied: "You know, I can't say I miss my father, because I just didn't know him. And so, I don't have enough of an emotional bond there to miss him. I profoundly miss my grandfather. You know, I profoundly miss my mom. And my grandmother."

One father, Col. Steve Curda from Chicago, Ill., who is serving in Afghanistan, and who has missed two Father's Days with his daughters, asked the president what he would consider the most perfect Father's Day.

Spending time with his daughters – while they're still young enough to actually want to spend time with him -- makes a perfect Father's Day, the president said.

"It is not the big spectacular things," he said. "It's not the lavish birthday parties. It's not the big gifts. It is those moments when you're just together and you are enjoying each other's company. And that's the stuff that lasts. And I suspect that's what's going to last for them. You know, when they think back to their childhood. I think that's going to be probably what's most important."

Strong Fathers, Strong Families

He added that the White House and the First Lady's Office were committed to supporting military families. On Wednesday, the administration launched "Strong Fathers, Strong Families," a special initiative to draw on public and private sector resources to help men overcome the challenges of fatherhood.

Military families will get special attention, he said.

"One of the things we've been doing is talking about how every father who's deployed out there has access to Skype so that they can see and talk to their kids," he added.

Learn more about the "Strong Fathers, Strong Families," initiative here.

During the interview, Obama also expressed his desire to see the struggling American economy rebound, and reiterated his commitment to pushing for an extension of this year's payroll tax cut.

"Whatever incentives we can provide for businesses to hire more people and provide an investment climate where more businesses are out there trying to expand, the better off we're going to be. And so I'll be working with leadings in both parties, hopefully, to make the right decisions for the American people," he said.

"We've got to put more people back to work," he said.

National unemployment rose in May to 9.1 percent, up from 9 percent in April. Economists had expected unemployment to fall, so the May numbers were met with disappointment.

There are an estimated 13.9 million unemployed people in the United States.

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