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In 2004, Barack Obama was elected to the U.S. Senate from the state of Illinois. He is currently the only African-American in the Senate. He says that he's noticed the change in how people perceive him.

Senator Obama: When I became a senator, for example, I noticed that people started treating me differently.

Oprah: How so?

Senator Obama: Well, you know, they're nice to me all the time. And they pretend that everything that you say makes sense. Which it doesn't, right? But they'll nod and say, "Senator, that's a great point." And so I think you [need to] have people around you who can remind you that, actually, what you just said makes no sense. …Fortunately, I have my wife to do that continually.
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FROM: Living The American Dream: Barack Obama and Mark Burnett
Published on January 19, 2005

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