WASHINGTON — Sasha Obama could be the deciding factor in whether her father stays in Washington after he leaves office.
President Obama told ABC News in a taped interview that his now 12-year-old daughter "will have a big vote in where we are."
When Obama leaves office in January 2017 after two terms, eldest daughter Malia could be off in college and Sasha will be a sophomore in high school. Both girls attend the exclusive Sidwell Friends School in northwest Washington.
Obama said he and his wife, Michelle, have to make sure Sasha is doing well until she goes off to college.
He suggested that no decisions have been made. But he did hint that tearing Sasha away from her friends might be asking too much, saying his wife and daughters already have made "a lot of sacrifices on behalf of my cockamamie ideas, the running for office and things."
In another portion of the interview, which aired Friday night on ABC's "20/20," Mrs. Obama says she tries not to tell her husband what to do because "he's got enough people in his ear."
"I try to stay out of his ear," she said.
Mrs. Obama says she and the president treat their living quarters on the second floor of the White House like a sanctuary, particularly when their girls are home. She says the girls like to talk about their day, which often has little to do with what's going on in the rest of the world.
"Everyone has to have their safe haven, a place of peace and calm and, you know, that's home for us," the first lady said.