July 9th, 2008
03:30 PM ET
10 years ago

Michelle Obama said no to Barack running to protect her kids


Watch Michelle Obama's comments .

(CNN)— In the wake of comments from presumptive Democratic nominee Barack Obama that he regretted allowing his daughters to participate in a television interview and would be avoiding similar situations in the future, wife Michelle Obama said again Wednesday she had initially asked her husband not to run for president because she didn’t want her two children to endure constant media exposure.

“I said don’t do it,” Michelle Obama told supporters at an event in Michigan. “What was going through my mind is that politics is mean and tough. I mean there was nothing that I wanted for my girls less than to have their lives turned upside down, you know to have them exposed to the public eye [or] to hear their parents being criticized on national TV.”

The potential first lady said she eventually decided that supporting her husband’s presidential bid would be the best move she could make for her daughters — that she wanted them to grow up in a world where there weren't any limits on what they could achieve.

“I had to step back and take off my ‘me’ hat and put on my ‘citizen’ hat,” Mrs. Obama said.

soundoff (129 Responses)
  1. Gretchen, KS

    What a wonderful, beautiful person. I will be proud to call her my first lady. I can tell by the kids demeanor that she is a wonderful mother. Those girls were so cute, and they really seemed to have a close relationship with their parents. How smart, and how thoughtful they were.

    Michelle, you're doing a great job.

    July 9, 2008 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  2. Cosmic Comedy Queen

    Gosh, she can be intelligent!

    July 9, 2008 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  3. Kyle, RI

    Now here's a first lady that I can really relate to–she's warm and down to earth.

    I really can't relate to Cindy Lou, someone who sneaks around with a married man, steals drugs, and doesn't open her mouth to say boo.

    July 9, 2008 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  4. Patty

    The audacity of this. They let their daughters be interviewed and then say they shouldn't have. Which is it? They are supposedly so intelligent – where are their brains. It is obviously all for the limelight. Anyone knows the media makes a circus out of things and for them to not realize this is a joke. they knew and did it anyway and now are being so hypocritical.

    July 9, 2008 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  5. Tristen


    Thanks for giving us a glimpse at those precious girls. They were adorable.

    God bless you and Barack, and I can't wait to vote in November.

    July 9, 2008 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  6. Louis Gesthon Abraham

    Mrs. Obama
    there is nothing for you to worry about. bringing the girls into the race was the best you could have done for your family. Your husband has to feel that he is not in the race alone but along with his family. Your daughters were being great and they all both look cute. Yes WE can and that WE includes you, your husband and also your daughters.

    Mr. President Obama and his family to the White House!

    July 9, 2008 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  7. If only ...

    If only Barack would've listened to his wife our country might have a better choice for president than what we have now! Shame on you, Barack Hussein Obama - you egotistical maniac who cares more about yourimage than your family!

    July 9, 2008 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  8. Marva, PA

    The kids were great. That little one was so cute when she said her dad didn't like sweets. How cute were those girls?

    I also liked the exchange about Baracks worn out belt, and shoes. That was funny.

    Obama 08

    July 9, 2008 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  9. Michelle

    Oh, Please!

    You were perfectly happy to exploit your daughters–Barack's campaign set up that interview– it wasn't just by chance. You and Barack decided to use your daughters and then later play sweet and innocent.

    (Does everyone know that Obama voted "yes" on FISA? How 's that for hope and change? )

    July 9, 2008 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  10. Hello!

    I wish he had listened to her.......

    July 9, 2008 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  11. Peter of Oregon

    I love that family... God bless them!

    July 9, 2008 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  12. TheTruthHurts

    Regardless of how you feel about the Access Hollywood video, it was clear they didn't expect the girls to take over the interview. They just started talking when questions were asked to the parents.

    Just like the rest of our kids. Can't blame them for that.

    July 9, 2008 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  13. Michelle, First Lady

    Michelle Obama:
    great spokesperson
    great American
    well read
    great mother
    good representative
    my first lady

    Love you Michelle–Go Barack!

    July 9, 2008 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  14. Lisa

    WOW Obama throw everybody under the bus, including his kids!!!

    July 9, 2008 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  15. Proud American

    Looking at the blogs I notice the obvious that America has some real backward, ignorant and inbred people. I thank God that most Americans are not that way. The rightous will once again run America.
    Obama '08

    July 9, 2008 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  16. Rick

    She's a loser.

    July 9, 2008 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  17. Brandon Hillary PUMA for Mc Cain-Pa

    Im not an english teacher and Im glad Michelle Obama is not eithier–

    July 9, 2008 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  18. Sherri

    Michelle Obama is spectacular. Her strength, intelligence, accomplishment and love for her family speak volumes. She will make a terrific first lady. She is a woman that all girls in America can look up too. She started from humble origins, working hard and earning degrees from both Princeton and Harvard. Her daughters are very fortunate to have Barack and Michelle looking after them.

    The girls were charming in the interview. I hope the media respects their parents wishes and leaves them alone. They are dear little children.

    Go Obama!

    July 9, 2008 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  19. JO

    Not to worry, Michelle ...... you and the girls won't be living in the White House!

    Go McCain '08

    July 9, 2008 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  20. Jimmy V

    Politics is mean and tough? Why not stop him from running for the Illinois State Senate or US Senate then? Just because you go up without riches doesn't mean you can't be an elitist. How many average Joes do you know that shop at Whole Foods?

    Not against Barack just pointing out how stupid comments are at times. Also, the Change Theme doesn't seem to work many of Barack's supporters who leave commentary behind here because they're just nasty and outright mean. If you say Republicans are dirty look at yourself in the mirror.

    July 9, 2008 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  21. Robert New York City & Miami, Florida

    I will not give him my vote, but those two girls of Barack and Michelle are more articulate than our President and certainly more precious.

    July 9, 2008 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  22. Gary of El Centro, Ca

    What a breath of fresh air the entire Obama family is in the rough and tumble world of politics. They will represent our country well.

    July 9, 2008 06:36 pm at 6:36 pm |
  23. Thomas Happ

    It's hard not to like the Obamas.

    July 9, 2008 06:37 pm at 6:37 pm |
  24. white people for obama

    I know people think Hillary is the only female in America that is a great feminist but why can't young women look up to Michelle, she gone to Law school & was already settled in her career before she met Barack. She is a true feminist. We should admire Michelle.

    July 9, 2008 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  25. Rachel

    Yeah someone needs to tell the truth the interview was planed access hollywood wouldnt send a reporter to montana without knowing they were gonna get an interview. They knew the girls would be a hit cause who could hate on such cute kids.(oh wait the media took delight in calling chelesa ugly when she was 13) They knew what they were doing they are too smart to not know what would happen barack has been complaining about his privacy for sometime did he think it would get better once he put the kids on tv?

    July 9, 2008 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
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