WASHINGTON -- After spending the last two months campaigning for Democratic candidates who have defended his agenda over the past two years, President Obama is planning to hold a post-election news conference on Wednesday that may give Americans a chance to gauge his direction in the coming months.
The White House said Tuesday that Obama will take reporters' questions Wednesday at 1 p.m. in the East Room. The mood will either be one of celebration -- if Democrats minimize losses in the House or Senate -- or perhaps moderation if Republicans take one or both chambers of Congress.
But even as the president wasn't seen Tuesday, he was heard. The president's mood in the run-up to Tuesday's vote could be measured by his get-out-the-vote effort. He recorded several radio interviews and a YouTube video that aired Wednesday urging people, especially the young voters who lifted his candidacy in 2008, to get to the polls.
"Today all across America people are waking up, and heading to the polls to cast their votes and make their voices heard. This election is about our future. It's about what we want this country to be. If you vote, you get a say in that future. But if you don't, you leave the decisions that affect your life to somebody else," the president says in the YouTube video.
He also worked the phones to urban-format radio stations Tuesday, arguing that his agenda would be "all at risk" if Republicans trampled Democrats.
"We need to keep moving forward, that's why I need folks to vote today," Obama told listeners to KPWR in Los Angeles.
Interrupting the music and chat of the station's morning show, Obama phoned in from the Oval Office to acknowledge voter frustration with the recession-bound economy -- and say that even though he's not on the ballot, his agenda is.
"Are we taking the steps now to move us in the right direction, or are going to go back to the policies that got us into that mess in the first place?" he said.
"Across the board, things have gotten better over the last two years," Obama said on KPWR. "The question is, can we keep that up? But we can only keep it up if I've got some friends and allies in Congress and in the statehouses."
The host and others on the "Radio Big Boy" program were vocal in their support, and told the station's listeners how "cool" it is to have Obama as president.
It's unknown whether the president would share any warm moments with Republicans on Wednesday -- should they win the majority on Tuesday.
White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer suggested that a Politico report that said the president is going to jump on calls for bipartisanship and get down to business on "shared priorities" oversells the White House's plans.
"That isn't right. We won't have a message until after the election results," Pfeiffer said, suggesting the White House merely wants to watch returns before it determines an approach to Wednesday and beyond.
But already the president has amended a partisan comment he made during an interview with Latino network Univision. In the Oct. 25 interview, Obama said, "If Latinos sit out the election instead of saying, we're gonna punish our enemies and we're gonna reward our friends who stand with us on issues that are important to us, if they don't see that kind of upsurge in voting in this election, then I think it's gonna be harder and that's why I think it's so important that people focus on voting on November 2."
But in an interview with Michael Baesdin on Monday, Obama said he should have used the word "opponents" instead of "enemies."
"I said, well, you can't punish your friends when -- the folks who've been supporting it. Now, I did also say if you're going to punish somebody, punish your enemies, and I probably should have used the word, 'opponents' instead of enemies. Now the Republicans are saying that I'm calling them enemies. What I'm saying is you're an opponent of this particular provision, comprehensive immigration reform, which is something very different," he said.
That didn't matter to House Republican Leader John Boehner of Ohio, who would be poised to be the next House speaker if Republicans regained the majority.
"I have a word to describe these people who have the audacity to fight for our Constitution, Mr. President. These people aren't enemies; they are patriots," Boehner said at a rally Monday night.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.