The First Lady
Michelle Obama Visits HUD
By Ed O'Keefe
First lady Michelle Obama continued her tour of federal agencies and departments today, stopping by the Department of Housing and Urban Development to thank staffers and remind them that their work is critical as Americans face housing troubles.
Today's visit, coupled with a stop at the Department of Education earlier this week, was partly designed as a "listening tour" and public thank you to the federal workforce, and also an effort to "rally the troops" as the Obama administration sets priorities. The order of her visits is based on her schedule, not her policy priorities, aides stressed.
Both the physical set up and tone of today's event resembled the hundreds of campaign appearances she made last year, to mostly welcoming crowds. Her remarks were mixed with serious comments and casual jokes.
Here are a few of the highlights:
-- "It's of critical importance that we stem the tide of foreclosures and find a way to keep people in their homes," she told several hundred HUD staffers at the department's Washington headquarters.
-- "Homeownership, at least as I knew it growing up on the South Side of Chicago, has always been one of the building blocks for strong neighborhoods, for strong schools and for strong families. People who own their homes and take care of their homes, it leads to the well-being of the entire community. It's critical."
Posted at 4:24 PM ET on Feb 4, 2009
The First Lady
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