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Obama Says His Biggest Mistake Has Been Communicating to Public

He entered the national spotlight demonstrating expert skills in oration, but President Obama says it's actually been in the area of communication where he's committed his greatest error.

"The mistake of my first term - couple of years - was thinking that this job was just about getting the policy right," the president said Thursday in a sit-down interview with CBS News anchor Charlie Rose. "And that's important. But the nature of this office is also to tell a story to the American people that gives them a sense of unity and purpose and optimism, especially during tough times."

President Obama said he's fallen short in "explaining, but also inspiring" the American public, which is why he has been spending more time traveling the country.

He continued, "It's funny - when I ran, everybody said, well he can give a good speech but can he actually manage the job? And in my first two years, I think the notion was, 'Well, he's been juggling and managing a lot of stuff, but where's the story that tells us where he's going?' And I think that was a legitimate criticism."

Honing in on Mr. Obama's assessment that the role of the presidency is "also to tell a story to the American people," Mitt Romney issued a sharply worded statement.

"President Obama believes that millions of Americans have lost their homes, their jobs and their livelihood because he failed to tell a good story," the presumptive Republican nominee said. "Being president is not about telling stories. Being president is about leading, and President Obama has failed to lead. No wonder Americans are losing faith in his presidency."

His spokesman Ryan Williams also leaped at the opportunity to critique the president's comments, saying, "The President continues to demonstrate that he is completely out of touch with U.S. economic reality. He believes the private sector is doing fine and the economy is headed in the right direction, the 23 million Americans out of work could hardly disagree more."