April 5th, 2013
07:52 AM ET
5 years ago

Michelle Obama slips up, calls herself ‘single mother’

(CNN) – Her husband is one of the most powerful men in the world, but his wife seemed to forget about him for a split second during an interview Thursday.

Speaking with CNN’s Burlington, Vermont-based affiliate WCAX, Michelle Obama was describing the challenges of eating healthy for busy parents when she said, “Believe me, as a busy single mother - or I shouldn’t say single - as a busy mother, sometimes when you’ve got a husband who is president it can feel a little single. But he’s there,” the first lady said.

The first lady joined school children Thursday in the White House kitchen garden, planting lettuce and other vegetables. She’s made combatting childhood obesity a central issue during her time in the White House, and has spoken frequently about the challenges parents face in providing their children with healthy food.

“As a busy working mom, and before I was in the White House, I was in that position as well. Working, driving kids to practice, not having enough time to shop or cook. Not having the energy. Resources weren’t the issue, but time and energy is key,” she said in the interview with WCAX.

Filed under: Michelle Obama
soundoff (275 Responses)
  1. YoseMom

    I work full time (40 to 60 hours a week) yet I still make sure I make the time to prepare (from scratch) healthy meals for my family. If it is important to you it's all a matter or making the time and doing it no matter how tired you are.

    April 5, 2013 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  2. Dr. Phil

    This is priceless by rick: "Forget the birth certificate. Let's see the marriage certificate." Hahaha. Obama is the man. He loves his little girls. Like someone said earlier, comparing a busy father to one who doesn't exist is a joke!!! Obama's job is allowing me to be a better father to my children. I guess that's one of the sacrifices being a public servant who actually does his job. Mrs. Obama...get it right next time!!! Obama's the man!!!

    April 5, 2013 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  3. ert

    ...when your ffunction is essentiallly as the "Beard" for Barry, his real proclivities well-hidden by the fawning toady mass media, such Freudian slips are then understandable

    April 5, 2013 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  4. Bleh64

    Errr, ummm, i thought the presidential families had their own cooking staff? What a freakin joke to compare herself to an actual "working mom" or even a "single mom". It don't wash Michelle, try again.

    April 5, 2013 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  5. Jean-Luc

    Come on, this is obviously a slip of the tongue. Giving this interview, she was probably talking about different kinds of mothers (single included). Sometimes when you repeat a phrase a few times, it pops up when you don't mean to say it. It's happened to all of us before! Give Mrs. Obama a break and let's focus on the issues- like that of child obesity which she's crusading for.

    April 5, 2013 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  6. Joi

    I am really disappointed in reading all of these comments. And since when did we begin calling the president "Barry?"

    April 5, 2013 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  7. retief1954

    No wonder Repubs can't stand Michelle Obama. Who does she think she is, trying to teach little kids about how to grow vegetables, eat healthy, and exercise??? Liberal indoctrination!

    April 5, 2013 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  8. carla morin

    And if Michelle was doing a cancer treatment interview she would probably say she was a cancer survivor, and so on and on. Obama and Michelle lie so much it must be difficult remembering all the lies!

    April 5, 2013 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  9. ART

    Is it just me or is just me one of Palin's followers who has drank from the dumb cool aid

    April 5, 2013 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  10. woodlander2

    Lets put these two together, Barack is involved with the California AG and Michelle is preparing to kick him to the curb and become a single mom.

    April 5, 2013 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  11. n222s

    I think the President is a failure in his job. I don't believe in Keynesian economic theory, particularly with regards to a more service based consumer economy. I believe his foreign policy is a failure (though he does seem to be taking the N.K. threat seriously). I believe he lacked the managerial experience his position requires. I think he is tied to an ideology too close to left wing/progressive autocratism.

    All that being said, let Michelle's comment alone. Everybody makes mistakes and on a scale of 1 to 10 this is about a 2 if 1 is making no mistake.

    April 5, 2013 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  12. critical thinking

    Poor Michelle! She only has a large staff of people waiting on her, a beautiful rent free for home, jets and limos to take her on vacations once a month to great locations but yet she struggles just like all single mothers with getting her chef to prepare health meals for her 2 daughters. Maybe she needs to be paid for being the First Lady, such a tough job.

    April 5, 2013 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  13. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    The FLOTUS ( God I love saying that in reference to Michelle Obama!) caught herself misspeaking. It can happen to anyone.
    Best POTUS EVER!! Excellent husband, father, role model for all who aspire to be the best that they can be.
    Best FLOTUS in many deacades! Gracious, intelligent, well-spoken, well-liked, and built like a brick s hithouse!!
    We love them both and are thankful for them.

    April 5, 2013 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  14. AirForceVet

    Disgusting that everything becomes a political issue. One word mistakenly stated becomes a brain that's not 'turned on' or a pandering slip-up. Idiots who question the President's sexuality, idiots who call the Secret Service 'servants' and idiots who don't recognize that Mrs. Obama's job is nearly a 24/7/365 position (obvious from that fact that EVERY word is scrutinized and NO allowances are made for any mistake). Stop looking for ways to hate someone. Even with the obscene level of childhood obesity, Michelle Obama receives immense criticism that she's trying to tell everyone what to eat when she tries to get children to move and eat more healthfully. It's clear that nothing she does will ever even be tolerated by all on the political spectrum. She has been one of the most amazing modern day First Ladies and I applaud her.

    April 5, 2013 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  15. Kat

    My husband travels for work – 4 weeks out of 4 a month! Home on weekends but – many times I feel like a single Mom! I get her feeling.

    April 5, 2013 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  16. Majav

    Pretty darn cute. I just Obama never slips up and tells us he is a deadbeat dad.

    April 5, 2013 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  17. givemea break

    As a single married husband, I can empathize with her misspeaking thingy. I never see my wife, I think she plans it that way. Which, really is OK by me.

    April 5, 2013 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  18. lord toronaga

    Oops. Maybe this is why the President likes "AG" Harris's bod. He's a single president.

    April 5, 2013 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  19. corpsman

    My wife (jokingly) says the same thing, even though I try to maximize family time when I'm not working. Unfortunately, my 60+ hr/week job is..... a 60+ hr/week job!

    April 5, 2013 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  20. Beast

    I am so glad we are clearing this up, because if a Republican President's wife ever said this, it would be the same misunderstanding, right ?

    Equal rights, yes ?

    April 5, 2013 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  21. Just Jen

    Alright, to be fair she is a busy lady...that being said-As a full time single mom of 2 teenaged boys ( and I mean full time as in NO HELP FROM A DEAD BEAT AT ALL!!) it can be a bit offensive. I mean, look around and see how many people are struggling and working (like myself) 10-12 hour days just to make rent and grocery shopping possible. Granted, I am not a huge fan of the Obamas but this just made my head spin. She has people writing her conversations for her...fire your writers or learn to read.

    April 5, 2013 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  22. sharm

    sure she made a little slip. give her a break. she is a great first lady and is on a mission of good.she hasn't always been the first lady so she quite possibly might understand. she seems to really care about the causes she champions. i am a single mother and i think she is fantastic. It is uplifting to see the Obamas as a family unit.
    besides it is more fun to pick on the leader of DPRK. his wife is probably loaded onto one of the missles.

    April 5, 2013 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  23. Chas

    Good one! Sort of "natural" to say that...LOL
    So once she's not living in the WH they're saying she's considering a run for Senator... don't expect Barack to take over, he'll be busy at speaking engagements like Clinton.

    April 5, 2013 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  24. Name

    I understand her completely! I feel the same!

    April 5, 2013 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  25. Lee

    Maybe she's looking forward to the divorce once they get evicted from the White House in 4 years and have to go back to the shack in Chicago??

    April 5, 2013 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
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