Michelle Obama signals that she intends to be more than `mom-in chief

February 5th, 2009 - 1:44 pm ICT by ANI  

Washington, Feb.5 (ANI): US First Lady Michelle Obama has signaled that she intends to be more than just mom-in-chief at the White House by embarking on visits to her husband’’s administration agencies. According to Fox News, Michelle Obama visited the Department of Education earlier this week, and had to catch herself when she repeatedly used the word “we” as she discussed her husband’’s policies.
Her planned visits to a slew of Cabinet agencies signal that she intends to take a far more active role than what she has given herself. “Those are forays into public policy, so that’’s a little bit surprising,” said Myra Gutin, Rider University professor and author of “The President’’s Partner: The First Lady in the Twentieth Century.”
Obama visited staff at the Department of Housing and Urban Development Wednesday as part of her flurry of recent activities. There she made the case for her husband’’s economic recovery plan, telling hundreds of enthusiastic employees that the department would play a “critical” role in the stimulus plan.
Monday’’s stop at the Education Department followed a lunch with second lady Jill Biden and Washington Mayor Adrian Fenty, whose city is funded in large part with federal dollars. On Wednesday, the first lady and the president visited a Washington public school.
Obama’’s first solo event as first lady was last week, when she hosted a reception for Lilly Ledbetter, the namesake of a fair pay bill that was the first legislation President Obama signed.
Michelle Obama called the legislation an “important step forward” and said, “it’’s also one cornerstone of a broader commitment to address the needs of working women.”
The first lady’’s Web page on the White House Web site says that her daughters, Malia and Sasha, will be her top priority in Washington.
And in a “60 Minutes” interview with her husband shortly after the election, she said her primary focus in the first year will be ensuring that the girls “make it through the transition.”
But she ticked off education, military families and “the work-family balance issue” as topics she’’s attuned to, and she said she wants to contribute to the Washington area.
President Obama added that his wife would “design her own role.”
Like Clinton, Michelle Obama has an Ivy-League law degree. She graduated from Harvard Law School and from Princeton University before that with a degree in sociology. Like Clinton, Obama enters the White House as a career woman.
But unlike Clinton, she’’s not taking a West Wing office. Like Laura Bush and other first ladies, she’’s sticking to the East Wing. A representative for Obama could not be reached for comment. (ANI)

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