NJ: Like what?
LO: I'll tell 'em straight up, [affects Obama voice] "Look. If I was from Kenya, wouldn't I have won the New York City Marathon by now?"
NJ: Has doing all this made you think differently about Obama?
LO: In a weird way, yes. I look like him, and now I'm making a living, I'm traveling the world, just because I look like him. It's not actually just because [I look like him], because it takes work, dedication. You gotta practice the voice [affects Obama voice]. And you gotta talk about Sasha and Malia. Sasha and Malia, my two beautiful girls.
Dressed as Obama, Ortiz met the Dalai Lama. (Bronx Obama movie)
NJ: Has this made you think differently about what it's like to be the president?
LO: It's not all fun and games looking like him. I get called all kinds of nasty words. People hate me just because they hate him. I am the lightning rod for Obama. I attract love, a lot of love, and a lot of hate, as well. Due to the nature of my career, thankfully, I can turn a Republican, and/or a racist person, into a laughing bowl of joy. By the time I get through with them, they're just laughing, they're shaking my hand at the end when I gotta go. And they're, like, "Look, man. I hate Obama, but I love you, man." And they're wishing me the best.
NJ: How does the president's approval and popularity affect your business?
LO: It varies. Sometimes it's just the way it seems: If Obama does good, I do good. People love me more. If Obama does bad, then I do bad. People sometimes just don't wanna hire me. But sometimes, it's the opposite. [If] he's doing really good, there's nothing to make fun of about Obama or something like that. When he's doing bad, sometimes I get a lot of requests. Like, "Oh, let's have you come into this party of conservatives and talk about what a bad job you're doing." And they love it.
NJ: Where will you be traveling this year?
LO: I got a job in Russia where I'll be doing something with a Putin impersonator. It's all approved by Putin, of course. And I might just be meeting the man himself, Putin. My life is a movie. Literally. It's just insane. Two of the most powerful men in the world, Putin and Obama. I look like one, and I just might meet the other one. I'm just flabbergasted. I'm in complete awe every day when I think about how this Russian job in three weeks just might happen.
NJ: Are you going to try any of your jokes on Putin?
LO: Let me tell you something. I am not messing around. I will make sure I run any jokes by the people that I'm with. I do not wanna anger anybody out there.
NJ: Do you think you'll still be able to do this in five, 10 years?
LO: This is it. I'll be doing this for the next 15 to 20 years, because Barack Obama is the first African-American president. He's iconic, he's historic, and he got two terms, so there's enough material there for me to milk this cow all the way to the end.