Jackie Gingrich Cushman

The combination of Obama's rapid ascent in politics and the mass appeal of his candidacy might have led him to believe all the marketing messages released from his organization and all the praise heaped upon him by many in the news media.

With more than 80,000 people packed into Invesco Field for his acceptance speech at the 2008 Democratic National Convention, all standing and cheering, and more than 20 million other people watching from home, it must have been hard for the junior senator from Illinois to maintain humility.

As time went on, it didn't get any easier. At his inauguration, 1.8 million people attended his address and lined the parade route, The Washington Post estimated.

This could have led Obama to believe that it's "all about me." It's easy when the crowds and the press provide worship and adulation, but it gets harder when those same people begin to ask questions and press for answers.

It's like going from a steam room to a plunge into cold water -- shocking, to say the least.

Possibly, what we are beginning to see is Obama's "hidden side: his imperious, mercurial, self-righteous and sometimes prickly nature," as David Mendell described it in his 2007 book, "Obama: From Promise to Power." Mendell is a former Chicago Tribune reporter who has covered Obama since his days in the Illinois State Senate.

While the American people want a confident leader, they do not want one who is cocky, conceited or arrogant. President Obama should be humble and show the American people that he understands he serves at their bidding.

There is a difference between optimism based on faith in God and fundamental values, and arrogance based on faith in oneself and valuing one's own abilities.

On Monday, when ABC News White House Correspondent Yunji de Nies asked Robert Gibbs about Obama's "you've got me" statement, the White House press secretary responded: "I have not talked to the president about that. ...I hope it's not newsworthy to think that the president hopes and expects to be an effective campaigner in the midterm elections."

In the end, we might not ever find out whether Obama made the statement, "You've got me." It does not matter.

What does matter? Do the voters believe he could have said it, or can they imagine him singing it?

Jackie Gingrich Cushman

Jackie Gingrich Cushman is a speaker, syndicated columnist, socialpreneur, and author of "The Essential American: 25 Documents and Speeches Every American Should Own," and co-author of “The 5 Principles for a Successful Life: From Our Family to Yours”.