Joe Biden’s campaign is reported to be in talks with Michelle Obama to announce her endorsement of the Democratic candidate. Second, only to her husband’s, this will be Biden’s biggest endorsement of his campaign. To many Democrat voters, Michelle’s endorsement will likely carry more weight than the former president’s.
Michelle Obama is wildly popular with Democrats and Independent voters. I’ve heard some conservative women speak favorably of her, too. Not me, mind you, but other conservative women. Joe Biden’s people have no doubt seen polls like the Gallup poll at the end of last year which ranked Michelle Obama as the most admired woman in the United States in 2019. Melania Trump came in second in that poll, followed by Oprah and Hillary Clinton. The push is on to lockdown her endorsement and perhaps even talk her into doing some campaigning for good old Joe.
“We know what pretty much everyone in America does: Michelle Obama is probably the most beloved member of the Democratic Party and her support is a big deal,” a Biden aide told The Hill. “Any future announcement would reflect the incredible impact her voice has.”
Howard Gutman, who worked in the Obama administration, told The Hill the Biden team would take anything it can get from her, but “It’s a question of how much [she and her family] want her to be out there in the crossfire.”
Michelle Obama has never held public office and at this point in her life isn’t likely to do so. Why would she? She has all the platform she wants any time she wants it through the Obama-loving press and the Democrat Party. Hollywood loves the Obamas even more than they loved the Clintons. The Obamas are making sweet Netflix money now. There are also book deals and speaking appearances. Why would someone who has never shown a personal desire to be a public servant take such a huge pay reduction now? She won’t. She remains popular because she isn’t involved in politics publicly. She doesn’t have to play second fiddle to a bumbling old man who has trouble stringing a couple of sentences together.
Mrs. Obama is involved in politics behind the scenes and in specially selected projects. She was quick to slam any woman who didn’t vote for Hillary Clinton after the 2016 election and groused that Republican and conservative voters were so critical of her husband. Boy, good thing Democrats were so kind and gracious to George W. Bush, amirite?
Michelle Obama launched a voter registration initiative in 2018 to help Democrats win that election cycle. She is still active with that, along with her celebrity friends she has brought into her efforts.
Friday it was announced that Michelle will be hosting a PBS children’s show. “Mondays with Michelle Obama” will show Mrs. Obama reading books to children. The first show airs April 20. The idea is that this is supposed to be something she is doing as a good deed during the days of quarantine. It’s for the children.
I'm thrilled to share some of my favorite children's books and give kids an opportunity to practice their reading (while giving families a much-needed break!).
— Michelle Obama (@MichelleObama) April 17, 2020
I wonder why PBS didn’t ask Laura Bush or Melania Trump, both of whom regularly read to children, to do the same. Just kidding. We all know why.
The point is, Michelle Obama never really left the public debate arena. She just does it without the obvious pleas for attention that people like Hillary Clinton do. Both of the Obamas tweet, though Michelle doesn’t do very much of that. I’m sure the most valuable action they can take on behalf of Joe Biden, besides making public endorsements, is to raise money for his campaign. In that effort, they will be very successful. Just think of the star-studded events in Hollywood and in New York City, as well as the humble video requests made for the normal folks in real America. The money will flow in.
The election in November will depend on what elections always depend on – voter turnout. Trump voters are fired up and very loyal. Biden has yet to catch fire and very well may not with Democrat voters, other than the very vocal Never-Trump opposition on social media. It remains to be seen if Joe can go the distance of a national campaign, make the adjustments necessary during the present coronavirus pandemic, and hire a team of people who can think outside the box as much as the Trump team does. Biden is going to have to do a lot better than he has done so far, that’s for sure.