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Posted at 9:35 AM ET, 01/28/2011

Michelle Obama: 'I'll be right there' on 2012 campaign trail

By Nia-Malika Henderson

First lady Michelle Obama, who dusted off her campaign playbook in 2010 to help Democrats keep the Senate, said Friday that while 2012 is "a long time away," she'll be ready when it's time to gear up for her husband's re-election campaign.
 
"Whenever it's time to campaign, and they tap me on the shoulder, I'll be right there. But until then, we've got some great initiatives," she said in an interview on ABC's Good Morning America.

"I am excited about what we are going to be doing with military families in the coming year," she said. "We've got a lot of work to do and I'm rolling up my sleeves to get that work done and we'll cross that other bridge when we get there."
 

Obama, who plans to roll out a campaign around military families in the coming weeks and make a renewed push on her childhood obesity efforts, traveled to Columbia, S.C. Thursday, where she toured the Army's largest training base.

She also appeared on Oprah Winfrey's show, focusing on the struggles of military families. President Obama on Monday announced an administration-wide directive to help strengthen military families.

Touring Fort Jackson on Thursday, the first lady praised efforts to offer better, more nutritious foods in the mess hall. She called childhood obesity a "national security issue."

"Young recruits are coming in with higher percentages of stress fractures because they're not used to moving around. They're coming in unable to train because they're either overweight or some are even malnourished and it's costing this nation a lot of money for all this retraining that they have to do," she said. "They may never be battle ready."

Last week, she took the stage with Wal-Mart executives to highlight the company's efforts to offer low priced fruits and vegetables and more healthy food choices to their customers--the retailer is the nation's largest grocery store.

In her interview with ABC's Robin Roberts, she also touched on the Tucson shootings and said that the reaction to the tragedy showed that the country unites in difficult moments.

"Even in our deepest pain, our most horrific moments, we come together, because that community stepped up and supported Gabby Giffords and all the other families ... they were there for them," she said. "And the spirit of that is something that...we need to embrace and be reminded that that's who we are as a
nation."

On Nelson Mandela, the former South African president who is in fragile health and was hospitalized briefly this week, Obama said that his life has "given us a little road map about how to treat one another."

"What do you say about someone who's changed the face of the world? Nelson Mandela is, as so many of our heroes ... paved the way for people like me and my husband and so many other who are going to continue to look up to his legacy," she said. "So we are grateful to have been alive to see the impact of his life."

By Nia-Malika Henderson  | January 28, 2011; 9:35 AM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency  
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Comments

I was awaiting with bated breath for this tremendous announcement. Excuse me, I just threw up. Get a grip you feminist shrew You weren't elected to anything so butt out. Lose your back side/caboose if you plan on campaigning.

Posted by: nomobarry | January 28, 2011 6:22 PM | Report abuse

I was awaiting with bated breath for this tremendous announcement. Excuse me, I just threw up. Get a grip you feminist shrew You weren't elected to anything so butt out. Lose your back side/caboose if you plan on campaigning.

Posted by: nomobarry | January 28, 2011 6:21 PM | Report abuse

This is a really great administration. The "first Lady" wants to tell us what to eat. The wonderful Vice-President Biden is telling us Mubarak is not a dictator. WOW lets all put down our Big Macs and join up so we can go to Egypt to defend Mubarak from his enemies.

Posted by: g30rg3544 | January 28, 2011 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Azarkhan | January 28, 2011 11:39 AM | Report abuse

It's like watching a really ugly, hulking Marie Antoinette. Millions of Unemployed Americans? Let them shop at Prada!

Posted by: carlbatey | January 28, 2011 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Be sure to bring pictures from your vacation to that luxury resort in Spain, too....something many middle class and poor Americans can only "dream" about!
especially with 9.5% unemployment and even
more Under-employed!

Posted by: ohioan | January 28, 2011 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Be sure to bring pictures from your vacation to that luxury resort in Spain, too....something many middle class and poor Americans can only "dream" about!
especially with 9.5% unemployment and even
more Under-employed!

Posted by: ohioan | January 28, 2011 11:11 AM | Report abuse

Bring on the woman power! We need the wives to step up in today's political arena. Especially those who have worked at the community-grass roots level like Michelle Obama. I see this woman going a far way in service for this country!

Posted by: knowbout | January 28, 2011 10:40 AM | Report abuse

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