Trump Made Obama Feel Like Michael Corleone in ‘The Godfather’ After 2016 Election Victory

Following Donald Trump’s election victory in 2016, then-President Barack Obama reportedly struggled with his successor’s win by questioning his legacy and even likening himself to one of the most famous characters in film history, according to a new book.

The memoir, The World as It Is, by longtime Obama adviser Benjamin Rhodes, delves into not only the 44th president’s reaction to Trump’s upset victory but that of other leaders, as well as how the Obama administration approached Russia’s interference in the 2016 election, according to The New York Times. Rhodes served as deputy national security adviser to Obama for both of his terms.

Trump’s election resulted in Obama asking his aides questions about whether his administration was wrong for attempting to try to push the country more toward globalism and even wondered if his time as the nation’s first African-American president came too soon.

“Sometimes I wonder whether I was 10 or 20 years too early,” Rhodes quoted Obama as saying.

Obama even referenced The Godfather movie franchise, comparing himself to actor Al Pacino’s turbulent and conflicted main character in light of Trump appearing poised to undo much of what Obama had accomplished over his eight years in office.

“I feel like Michael Corleone,” Obama said. “I almost got out.”

GettyImages-850279024 Former President Barack Obama speaks at the Gates Foundation Inaugural Goalkeepers event on September 20, 2017 in New York City. Getty Images/Yana Paskova

In his first 16 months in office, Trump has tried to repeal Obamacare, the signature domestic accomplishment of his predecessor’s administration, and pulled the U.S. out of the Paris climate accords and the Iran nuclear deal.

Obama also handed out advice to other world leaders, including encouraging Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to speak out more. According to Rhodes's description, German Chancellor Angela Merkel teared up after meeting with Obama for the final time.

Rhodes also delved into Russia’s meddling in the election and what Obama did to try to curtail it. Obama signaled that his hands were tied over the matter and, even as aides encouraged him to be more outspoken, said that Trump would twist more warnings about Russia’s interference as part of his claims that the election was “rigged” against the Republican.

Obama, at first, was more optimistic than his staff following Trump’s win. But eventually, he wondered if the country wanted a “cartoon” like Trump.

“I don’t know,” Obama said to aides. “Maybe this is what people want. I’ve got the economy set up well for him. No facts. No consequences. They can just have a cartoon.”

Rhodes’s book is scheduled for a June 5 release.