Obama Snaps Selfies With Ellen, But Refuses Ordinary People

Barack Obama talks to talk show host Ellen DeGeneres during a break in the taping of The Ellen DeGeneres show at Warner Brothers Studios in Burbank, California on February 11, 2016.
Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

President Obama is described as the first “selfie” president, and was filmed by Buzzfeed using a selfie stick. But the commander-in-chief, who has lived in a bubble for the last seven years, apparently loathes taking selfies.

“If we had had smartphones when I first ran for president, I’m not sure I would have run,” he told a crowd in Springfield, Illinois earlier this week. “Because folks just have their phones, they don’t want to shake my hand anymore. It’s like, ‘Hey! I’m here, live in front of you.”

But it appears that the president has time for selfies when approached by the Ellen DeGeneres, the top celebrity of daytime television.

Obama taped an episode of the Ellen show during his fundraising tour of California for the Democratic party.

Obama also famously snapped selfies with the Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt and UK Prime Minister David Cameron during a memorial service for Nelson Mandela.

After Red Sox slugger David Ortiz snapped a selfie with the president, while he was promoting a Samsung phone, former senior adviser Dan Pfeiffer suggested that it might be the “end of all selfies” when it came to the president.

That certainly proved true, at least with the everyday people he met.

After his State of the Union address, Obama shot down a young man who requested a picture.

“I can’t take selfies,” he said.

 Last June, the president also refused to take a selfie with a girl after an event at the White House.