Charles Gibson Interviews Barack Obama

ABC's Charles Gibson spoke with presumptive democratic nominee Barack Obama today. Below is the transcript of the interview.

GIBSON: Senator, I'm curious about your feelings last night. It was an historic moment. Has it sunk in yet?

OBAMA: No. You know ... you have been working so hard, 54 contests, so many months, meeting so many people, and then to suddenly walk into an auditorium with 17,000 people and realize you're the Democratic nominee. That's a pretty big dose to swallow all at once, but I will say that talking to my grandmother last night probably drove it home.

GIBSON: What'd she say?

OBAMA: Here's a woman, who, well, she just said she was really proud. And, I thought back to all the work she's put in, all the sacrifices she made, ah, she's now a little too fragile to travel and so she watches it on TV and she's going blind, so to hear in her voice, what this meant to her, that was a pretty powerful moment.


GIBSON: Public moments are not your own. There's a million people pulling you in a million different directions, but when everybody clears out, the staff is gone, you're in your hotel room at night and you're alone -- do you say to yourself: "Son of a gun, I've done this?"

OBAMA: You do say to yourself, "My, how far we have traveled." And, and I say a little prayer to not only thank God for the blessings, but also to make sure that you're worthy of the honor.

I've been -- there's something very humbling about this whole process. You know, you realize there are so many wonderful people in this country who are working so hard on behalf of their families and on behalf of their hopes and their dreams.

And when you run for president, you're -- you're saying to them, "I can help. I can make sure your children are safe. I can make sure you have a job that pays a living wage. I'm going to make sure that when you get sick, you've got some help." And you just want to make sure that you are doing everything you can to deliver on those promises.

And that's what keeps me awake at night. It's not so much the day-to-day politics -- it's sort of projecting into the future and saying to myself, you know, "How can I make sure that I'm bringing everything I've got to bear, but also all the talent and resources and energy of this country to move us in a direction where those individuals that you're meeting are actually getting the opportunities that they deserve?"

GIBSON: (inaudible) when you announced, did you truly, in your gut, think that a black man could win the nomination of a major party to be president of the United States?

OBAMA: Absolutely. I would not have -- I would not have run if I didn't believe that I could win. This is too hard a process.

You know, there's some races you get in just for, you know -- I know that politicians might say to themselves, "Well, I'll throw that trial balloon," or this or that.

No, being a presidential candidate is an enormous sacrifice for your family. I've got two girls that I love dearly. And to be away from them this much, I wouldn't have done it if I didn't think I could win.

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