Former President Barack Obama said at a tech conference Wednesday that one key to his decision-making was relying on staff and surrounding himself with a diversity of viewpoints, before adding:
"The other thing that is helpful is not watching TV or reading social media."
Why it matters: Obama has largely avoided major criticisms of President Trump, but he used his comments Wednesday to draw a contrast between the two administrations.
- Obama admitted during his speech that he made mistakes in hiring. "I won’t say we enforced perfectly the no jerk rule' but its a pretty good rule. I won’t say who violated that rule."
- He then added: "I'm proud of the fact we didn’t have indictments. I’ve said that before but that is pretty rare in modern day." Special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation resulted in the indictments of 6 former Trump advisers.
Other highlights: Obama said there are tough calls you have to make as president, citing the decision to go after Osama Bin Laden as a 50-50 call and bailing out Chrysler as a 60-40-type decision.
- To make those calls, Obama said, you need the facts without spin or sugar-coating, as well as a diversity of opinion.
- Obama added that it's also important that the people who serve in the administration aren't there for fame or money: "Are folks here because they want to serve the American people?"