First lady depicted as fat, chowing down hamburger platter in cartoon
February 14th, 2011
02:26 PM ET
12 years ago

First lady depicted as fat, chowing down hamburger platter in cartoon

Washington (CNN) - First lady Michelle Obama is often praised for her taut arms and athletic physique. So why is a cartoon depicting her with fat cheeks, a double-chin and chowing down a platter full of hamburgers?

The cartoon appears on The man behind the site is blogger and conservative firebrand Andrew Breitbart.

In the cartoon, the first lady is shown saying: "I've stepped up my efforts to control America?s eating habits by telling restaurants to lower portion sizes and fat content." The drawing shows a plump Mrs. Obama working her way through a plate full of hamburgers and fries.

In contrast, President Obama thinly drawn at her side- is shown eating what appears to be light vegetables from a near-empty plate.

"Michelle, I want to get re-elected. What you're doing is only going to annoy a lot of people," the cartoon depicts the president as saying.

"Shut up and pass the bacon!" the first lady shoots back in the drawing.

The real Mrs. Obama is pushing a nationwide initiative to decrease childhood obesity. A website devoted to the effort lays out how the waistlines of American children have been growing at alarming rates over the last 30 years.

"The physical and emotional health of an entire generation and the economic health and security of our nation is at stake," Mrs. Obama is quoted as saying on the site.

Some conservatives see the campaign as an effort by Mrs. Obama at using her public platform to tell Americans what to eat.

Last year, Sarah Palin told conservative radio host Laura Ingraham: "What [Michelle Obama] is telling us is she cannot trust parents to make decisions for their own children, for their own families in what we should eat."

More recently, Palin let out a slam in a recent episode of her reality show, "Sarah Palin's Alaska." While making s'mores at one point, the former Alaska governor said the marshmallow and chocolate treat is "in honor of Michelle Obama, who said the other day we should not have dessert."

Palin's comments echo public criticism from other conservatives.

Meanwhile, there's been attention given to some of the first couple's food choices. The president and First Lady are known for eating hamburgers, even publicly visiting burger chains like Five Guys. And the menu at the recent White House Super Bowl party had some people talking.

Mrs. Obama addressed the chatter about the menu, a few days later, on NBC's Today Show.

Today Show host Matt Lauer asked the First Lady about the "buffalo wings, the deep dish pizza, potato chips and bratwurst, kielbasa."

Mrs. Obama said: "Yeah. I've always talked about balance in this campaign. I mean, we're really trying to make some changes." She added: "So I do talk openly about my obsession with French fries because I want people to understand the changes that we have to make in our lives are not whole scale changes. Many of the changes for kids are small things, things like adding fruits and vegetables and getting our kids moving and taking–putting more water in the diet."

Reader comments posted after the cartoon are telling.

"I just figured out how MooShelle plans to control Americas eating habits. She plans on eating everything herself," one person posted. "It's really proof for me that we've gotten so hateful toward each other that the Obamas could do nothing that you would agree with. They could kiss a baby and you would find something wrong with it," is the comment from another poster.

In a recent USA Today interview Mrs. Obama denied that she is trying to tell Americans what to eat.

–CNN Ticker Producer Alex Mooney contributed to this report

–Follow Shannon Travis on Twitter: @shantravisCNN

Filed under: Uncategorized
soundoff (140 Responses)
  1. opiepaul

    Disrespectful. So many people WISH they were as physically fit as the first lady. Which is how one refers to the president's wife, not as "Mooshelle." Disrespectful.

    February 14, 2011 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  2. Bill

    Only conservatives, who thrive off the support of obese trailer trash, would mock the First Lady for trying to get people to eat healthier. Perhaps Breitbart should look at his own double chins in the mirror before he criticizes anyone else. Oh, and maybe he could explain why his wife and her family are all admitted communists?

    February 14, 2011 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  3. ThinkAgain

    While making s'mores at one point, the former Alaska governor said the marshmallow and chocolate treat is "in honor of Michelle Obama, who said the other day we should not have dessert."

    Typical Palin, lying once again. Mrs. Obama never said we shouldn't have dessert; she advocates eating in moderation, just like health professionals and every other person having to deal with our nation's obesity problem.

    Palin = Quitter, Liar, Mooch

    February 14, 2011 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  4. kyle

    No surprise, what can you expect from a rightwing nut.

    February 14, 2011 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  5. Henry

    Yup, the rabid right is back at it. I am sorry, they never stopped. And we Americans, the bobble heads of the world, continue to fall for this nonsense. We are the most uininformed delusional people around. The problem is that we don't realize that we are this way. We live in fantasy land.

    February 14, 2011 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  6. ThinkAgain

    "The man behind the site is blogger and conservative firebrand Andrew Breitbart."

    Boy, the Republicans sure have their base figured out. They pander to all the losers in our country who've fallen on hard times and instead of doing something constructive to help out, they whine and moan and criticize those who are actually doing something FOR our country.

    What a pathetic bunch of morons!

    February 14, 2011 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  7. Hunter

    This is disgraceful and probably has racism at it's root.

    February 14, 2011 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  8. Terrence Vocals

    People are so over-the-deep-end…the First Lady is not telling Americans what to eat or being hypocritical. She’s trying to promote 1. Healthier eating 2. Being realistic in saying you can have some treats (burgers, deserts, etc.) but do it in moderation. People should stop being off-the-cuff “nay-sayers” and listen.

    February 14, 2011 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  9. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    It takes intelligence to bring down Michelle Obama because lack thereof is sure proof of ignorance.

    February 14, 2011 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  10. Bill

    That clown Brietbart sure has great timing. Seems to be he should be busy reading himself for the lawsuit that was filed agaist him last Friday by Shirley Sherrod. This guy is a real loser. I hope he loses his shirt in the lawsuit.

    February 14, 2011 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  11. The Real Tom Paine

    There is something called the 80/20 rule in dieting, which is that 20% of the time, you can treat yourself, provided you don't go overboard.

    What is really sad about this is that I don't recall Liberals slamming Laura Bush's attempts at combating illiteracy. This is a perfect example of the old joke about a man who is drowning being rescued by Jesus walking on water: first words out the man's mouth are" WTF? Can't you swim?".

    February 14, 2011 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  12. Susan

    If all she ate was tofu dogs and steamed vegetables, no one could identify with her. The cartoon misses that point. It's childish and ignorant.

    If the conservatives don't like the cost of health care, they should want to curb obesity and smoking! It's not "fuzzy math," it's very clear.

    February 14, 2011 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  13. ReFascistican

    How childish and disrespectful. But what do you expect from the man who was behind the Shirley Shirrod debacle. What a scumbag.

    February 14, 2011 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  14. Guest

    This is just insane. Michelle Obama is NOT forcing people to eat vegetables...she is merely trying to educate and inform people of healthy eating options. If you don't want to listen...don't. The right has gotten out of control and are so desperate that they would attack a women to make them feel more powerful. It's a matter of time before the attacks are hurled at the Obama girls...I bet Palin's children will start that fight. That's what republicans do best...bully!

    February 14, 2011 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  15. mb2010a

    Hmmmm...have you SEEN a picture of Andrew Breitbart? Talk about fat cheeks, a double-chin...this is a prime example of the pot calling the kettle black. Michelle Obama is the most beautiful and fit First Lady we've had since Jackie. She's HOT...

    February 14, 2011 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  16. lonewolf777

    The funny thing is that Conservatives have no sense of humor. The only time they were actually funny is when they nominated GW Bush and the joke ended up being on us.

    February 14, 2011 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  17. Indy

    The people against the First Lady also believe it is their American right to be a burden on healthcare and make the healthy people pay for it through re distribution of health care fees. These conservatives fully believe that the socialst act of unhealthy people over using healthcare and allowing the the healthy population to pick up the tab is A-OK. It is a very well proven fact that obesity is the biggest problem with healthcare prices skyrocketing but Republicans are bound and determined to keep allowing the problem to be paid for through the current socialist system .

    February 14, 2011 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  18. John

    I'm pretty sure it's a self portrait.

    February 14, 2011 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  19. Joe from CT, not Lieberman

    Man, if that was Laura Bush, the conservative blogosphere would be on Breitbard like a cheap suit! Rush, Glenn, Karl and company would point out that he was making a cheap shot at the First Lady, and the First Family is supposed to be off limits to stuff like that (unless your last name is Obama or Clinton)!

    February 14, 2011 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  20. Gaylon Barrow

    Yes you called it on the one who hated white america. She is a fat cow who is reaping the vacations and eating to high heaven. When she leaves office she will weigh 75 lbs more topping out at 300 lbs. She has the hips and height for it. you go big mommy.

    February 14, 2011 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  21. Anonymous

    No wonder... Andrew Breitbart is behind it... Nothing else need to be said...

    February 14, 2011 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  22. Canuck

    The hatred for Obama from the right is almost pathological. It's very damaging to the country in its attempts to move forwards.

    February 14, 2011 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  23. Matt

    I've seen worse.

    February 14, 2011 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  24. Byrd

    Why did this insidious caricature appear? Because Baitbreath caters to the ignorant humor so associated with the republican base. They actually sit around their offices in the RNC and are payed for thinking up this drivel, probably while watching reruns of Bevis and Butthead.

    February 14, 2011 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  25. runner305

    Why ANYBODY would give any credence to anything that Breitbart says, after his lies about Shirley Sherrod, is beyond me! Oh, that's right...we're talking about a right-wing nutcase here.

    February 14, 2011 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
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