CHICAGO--Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) just told MSNBC's Chris Matthews on a special "Hardball" college tour edition on Wednesday that "I fell off the wagon a couple of times" when it comes to smoking.
Obama told the students at West Chester University in Pennsylvania--with an April 22 primary against Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.)--that after lapsing he "was able to get back on" the wagon right away.
Obama quit smoking when he starting running for president last year, a condition laid down by wife Michelle.
"I fell off the wagon a couple times during the course of it, and then was able to get back on. But it is a struggle like everything else. And I think that it is important to just keep in mind, I have a nine-year-old daughter and a six-year-old daughter," Obama said.
" And I want to give them away in their weddings and I want to see my grand kids, and I want to set a good example for all these young people here, and I want to make sure as president of the United States, everybody knows that I'm going to try to stay healthy.
" I need you guys to stay healthy, too, because we need to bring our health care costs down," Obama said.