Pay No Attention To This "Controversy"

Visitors to the Drudge Report right now are greeted with a large headline that Michelle Obama criticized Hillary Clinton for the way she ran her house. It's taken from this article in the Chicago Sun-Times which is incredibly complimentary towards her. The paragraph in question was almost an aside, saying:

At another stop, in Atlantic, Michelle said she travels with her husband in part "to model what it means to have family values," adding "if you can't run your own house, you can't run the White House." She didn't elaborate, but it could be interpreted as a swipe at the Clintons.

I would not have read Clinton into these comments had I read them without the commentary. It justs seems really out of place for what I've seen from Michelle Obama, who often talks about her own home life on the trail. Sure enough, Barack Obama said as much as soon as anyone asked him if the comments were about Clinton:
In a just-concluded conference call, Obama responded to the suggestion that his wife was slamming the Clintons. "She wasn't making any reference to that," he said. "If anybody who's been listening to Michelle on the stump, she's talked about the importance of family, and the need for our family to make sure that we're thinking about our kids during the process of this campaign. And she's repeated that in every stump speech. So, you know, there are no references beyond her point that we've had an administration that talks a lot about family values, but doesn't follow through on it, and part of the challenge for us in this campaign is making sure that we are talking the talk but also walking the walk. That's all it was referring to, and as I said, that's been a standard aspect of her speech for a long time.

TPM Cafe has the transcript of the line in question:
That one of the most important things that we need to know about the next President of the United States is, is he somebody that shares our values? Is he somebody that respects family? Is a good and decent person? So our view was that, if you can’t run your own house, you certainly can'’t run the White House. So, so we’'ve adjusted our schedules to make sure that our girls are first, so while he’s traveling around, I do day trips. That means I get up in the morning, I get the girls ready, I get them off, I go and do trips, I’'m home before bedtime. So the girls know that I was gone somewhere, but they don’t care. They just know that I was at home to tuck them in at night, and it keeps them grounded, and, and children, the children in our country have to know that they come first. And our girls do and that’s why we’re doing this. We’re in this race for not just our children, but all of our children.

The facts seem to be in alignment that this isn't about how Hillary Clinton runs her house.

There's more...

Michelle Obama: Passionate, Fierce, All That....

Michelle Obama, just listen to her and no one can disspell her passion.  It is real, it is there.  Just listening to her, does make you THINK, it does.  This is a seven minute clip, portion of it was shown on Hardball and there was not one person who did not say, she is going to make a difference.  But she already is....

There's more...

Michelle Obama, WAL-MART, Daley, Big Box Ordinance Veto

There are many reasons to oppose Obama, whose paltry legislative record disqualifies him for the Presidency.  That he would cite state legislative experience during a Presidential campaign as a qualification already reveals to this voter how underprepared he is for the Presidency. 

Limit comments to discussion of candidates and connections to WAL-MART, please.  This should faciliate discussion about candidates' and corporate complicity and its potential relation to failures to implement progressive policies.  

There's more...

Michelle Obama and WAL-MART

There are many reasons to oppose Obama, whose paltry legislative record disqualifies him for the Presidency.  That he would cite state legislative experience during a Presidential campaign as a qualification already reveals to this voter how underprepared he is for the Presidency. 

There's more...

Michelle Obama Brings It (Throwing Down the Leadership Gauntlet)

When asked on Monday about Hillary Clinton backers questioning his experience -- a tactic
now being "pushed" by the Clinton campaign -- Obama responded:

The only person who would probably be prepared to be our president on Day 1
would be Bill Clinton -- not Hillary Clinton...I think that we're all very qualified for
the job. The question is who can inspire the nation to get us past the politics that
have bogged us down in the past.

Now comes Michelle Obama, who was in New York yesterday:

"For people who say that Barack Obama is not experienced...I can't wrap my
head around that," Michelle Obama told hundreds of people crowded into the
offices of the nonprofit Our Children's Foundation in Harlem.

"[H]e's ready to lead," she said. "The question is: Are you ready?...Will you
move out of fear, or will you move out of possibility?"

Michelle Obama added, "What they are counting on is for us not
caring...[and that voters will] stay at home."

It appears that the Obama campaign is gearing up to re-frame the entire debate over the meaning of
experience and leadership -- and to do it in a way that uses Clinton's own frames against her. This is
very good news.

Predictably, the Clinton campaign is highlighting Barack Obama's remarks on its news aggregator site,
in an undignified and unpresidential effort to mock Obama while feigning mock-woundedness over Obama's
truth-telling "jab."

Of course, the Clinton site doesn't link to the original Chicago Sun-Times piece, with Obama's complete remarks.
It links to an AP story that includes a fabricated rebuttal drawn entirely from a Bill Clinton fund-raising e-mail --
an e-mail which, by the way, features a photo of Bill gesturing expansively to a crowd, with Hillary clapping in the
background and looking offstage. Nice one, AP.

But just as Barack Obama's call for a new kind of politics is not a promise to roll over on the truth, Hillary Clinton's
tactic of mockery and woundedness has a very short shelf life. Clinton has been coasting along for months now on
the popular assumption that she has better experience and better leadership. But at some point very, very soon,
this assumption is not going to be good enough. She's going to have to prove it.

This week's remarks from Barack and Michelle Obama challenge Clinton to prove it. And they challenge the
American people to stop and consider that the right experience and the right leadership is about much more
than marrying well.


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