"I know that when I'm on my deathbed someday, I won't be thinking about any particular legislation I passed, or policy I promoted. I won't be thinking about the speech I gave, or the Nobel Prize I received," said Obama, 51. "I'll be thinking about a walk I took with my daughters, a lazy afternoon with my wife, whether I did right by all of them."
The speech was Obama's second commencement address of the season, following remarks last Sunday at Ohio State University in Columbus. His third and final graduation address will come Friday at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md.
About 500 students received undergraduate degrees on Sunday and became "Morehouse Men."
After the speech, Obama joined about 100 people at a fundraiser at the office of the foundation of Arthur M. Blank, co-founder of Home Depot and owner of the Atlanta Falcons. It was the first of six money events that officials say he will headline for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, which is recruiting candidates and strategizing to keep control of the Senate in next year's midterm elections. Democrats will be defending more Senate seats than Republicans, including six held by long-serving Democratic senators who have decided not to seek re-election.
After briefly discussing the economy, early childhood education, energy independence, climate change and infrastructure, Obama said "the good news is we've got good, common-sense solutions that we can implement right now," on those issues. "The bad news is there's a shortage of common sense in Washington."
He told the donors, who paid anywhere from $10,000 per couple to $32,400 per couple to attend the fundraiser, that their support is important because it will help elect more non-ideological senators like Michael Bennet, D-Colo., "who don't come at this thinking there's just one way of doing things." Bennet chairs the campaign arm for Senate Democrats and introduced Obama at the event.
"That kind of approach, if we get a critical mass in the Senate, and we can potentially get a critical mass of folks like that in the House, means that the sky's the limit," Obama said. "Nothing can stop us."
Follow Darlene Superville on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/dsupervilleap
- Photo gallery: Night skies over national parks
- Rep. Jason Chaffetz says he wouldn't run...
- Ann Romney on likability, Hillary Clinton, MS...
- Does your child struggle to focus? Here's why...
- Is 'Speaker Chaffetz' more likely with...
- Strong emotions as Obama visits grieving...
- 'Historic' floods hit South Carolina —...
- Police arrest man who posed as Mormon...
- Is 'Speaker Chaffetz' more likely with... 69
- Workers removing Ten Commandments from... 56
- Chaffetz's run for speaker makes... 47
- Mother-son bond over guns links Oregon,... 22
- 40 percent tax on employer insurance... 22
- Clinton pitches new gun controls... 16
- Obama touts immigration reform in... 16
- Judge dismisses negligence lawsuit... 15