Michelle Obama: A Debt of Gratitude

mbThe 2012 speech by Michelle Obama at the Democratic National Convention in support of her husband was undeniably brilliant and a political tour de force. She connected with the aspirations of millions of worried voters by recalling the personal stories of the Obamas – which were, of course, in stark contrast to those of the Republican candidate. At least one commentator noted that if Obama were to be re-elected he would have a greater debt of gratitude to his wife than any other president in history. She may also have helped him secure his second term by assuring women voters of his worth.

Michelle Obama studied sociology and African American studies at Princeton University, graduated from Harvard Law School in 1988 and then took up work at a Chicago law firm. Her later appointments have included Assistant Commissioner of Planning & Development at Chicago’s City Hall, Founding Executive Director, Chicago Chapter of Public Allies (which prepares young people for public service) and Associate Dean, Student Services at Chicago University.

“At least one commentator noted that if Obama were to be re-elected he would have a greater debt of gratitude to his wife than any other president in history.”

In 2010, the First Lady launched ‘Let’s Move’ a camp to fight childhood obesity and in the following year ‘Joining Forces’ in concert with Dr Jill Biden. ‘Joining Forces’ was established to respond to and support the needs of military personnel and their families.

Since her husband became president, Michelle Obama has demonstrated that she could easily have a prominent political future in her own right and perhaps as part of a double act to rival that of the Clintons. There is no question that she has acceptance, popular appeal and the relevant skills, but is there any inclination on her part?  It would seem unlikely at this point but at one time there was also doubt about Hillary Clinton’s motivation.


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