Michelle Obama's Campaign View
By Shailagh Murray
Appearing as a guest co-host on The View this morning, Michelle Obama shrugged off her role as flashpoint of her husband's presidential campaign. "I fill up some space," she said of critics in the media who parse her every word.
It was an appearance marked by multiple "fist bumps" and girl-talk confessions (i.e. "I stopped wearing pantyhose a long time ago," Obama told the other women on the set). "I wear my heart on my sleeve," she explained to her new friends, adding that she hopes voters come to understand that.
She acknowledged that sexism has played a role in the coverage of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's campaign, but as first lady models go, Michelle Obama appears to be looking in a different direction. She revealed that she had written a thank-you note to Laura Bush for defending her during an ABC News interview last week. Pressed about her potential successor's patriotism, Bush waved off a Michelle comment in February that she was proud of her country "for the first time in my adult life." The line ignited a firestorm among conservative commentators, but Bush asserted it had been blown out of proportion.
"I think she probably meant 'I'm more proud.' That's what she really meant," Bush said, speaking from Afghanistan. By way of advice, she added, "You have to be really careful in what you say because everything you say is looked at and in many cases misconstrued."
Obama said it took her a while to craft the note, and said she addressed Bush as "Madam First Lady." She said she was "touched" by Bush's comments and impressed in general with her "calm, rational approach." Obama added, "I'm taking some cues. There's a reason why people like her. She doesn't fuel the fire."
Web Politics Editor
June 18, 2008; 12:38 PM ET
Categories: Barack Obama
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