Chicago Sun-Times
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Sweet blog special: Michelle Obama's first fund-raising letter. Next stop: South Carolina.


WASHINGTON — Michelle Obama, wife of White House hopeful Barack Obama, sent out her first direct fund-raising letter earlier this month for his campaign, casting herself in the role of being the person in the life of the Illinois senator who cheerfully knocks him off his pedestal to remind him of his chores.

The May 4 three-page letter is a recast of the basic Michelle meets Barack story, from the law firm, to the first date, to “today we're married with a young family of our own.”

The letter is aimed at small dollar ($50 to $100) donors. It seems keyed to females — of Barack she lovingly writes, "this is a special man."

Michelle also plays into the role that she has been cast into: bringing the increasingly famous Obama, a frontrunner for the Democratic nomination, down to earth.

There have been several variations of this in Obama interviews. The template is Obama calls her all excited about something that has happened in the Senate and Michelle glosses over that to ask him to perform some household task.

In the letter, it goes like this: Obama calls her inspired because the Senate passed a bill dealing with nuclear proliferation. She does not mention that is one of his major issues and maybe that is why he was so excited. She then writes, "To which I replied, 'That's nice, but we have ants in the kitchen, and you need to pick up some ant traps on the way home.’ "

The ant trap is the latest in the stories from Michelle about Obama's lapses on the home front. Last month, New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd found those kind of remarks "emasculating" for a man running for president.

Asked about the Dowd column, Michelle Obama, 43, tells USA Today in a story in Friday's editions, “If you’re 23 and reading Maureen Dowd’s article, you could be crushed. If you’re 43, it’s sort of like OK, well, she obviously doesn’t know who I am, and she doesn’t understand,’’ she says. ‘‘I get way more affirmation, right? I was in a roomful of hugs today.’’

Earlier this week Michelle stumped in New Hampshire. Her next political day trip is May 19 to Columbia, S.C., where she will speak at the Brookland Baptist Church.


I just love Michelle. I got a letter from her yesterday.
I think she is the coolest of the political wives and so elegant and intelligent and warm. I hope alot more people get to see her.

That's it? That's your column? Oh right, you're the one who made the big to do about him not remembering his childhood the same way his friends did.
Afterall they would know his thougths and feelings as a teenager better than he would. Chris Matthews just ate it up. It's clear you're just waiting for Michelle to slip up but she's too human and doesn't really give a damn like most working or stay at home wives and mothers who have more on their minds than performing like a Stepford wife. If only you had spent as much ink on Laura Bush's chain smoking back in 2000 we might not be in the mess we're in today. You're a cheap and petty little unhappy woman. Maureen can be just like you when she grows up if she just hangs in there. Surely there must be another angle you can use to descredit the man or yourself.

(((LYNN SWEET REPLY TO TIGER--never wrote the story you mention.)))

Michelle was in Louisville Ky last night and was incredible. She did a Q&A which rivaled any of the presidential contenders.

I got the letter last week and sent my donation back the next day. I believe Michelle is one of the best assets Barack Obama has going for himself. I've always liked her.

Women for Obama!!

My letter came from Michelle Obama, and I plan to donate yet again, because she was very personable and intelligent when she spoke in New Hampshire on C-SPAN. She is a great asset to her husband's campaign. Maureen Dowd obviously doesn't know what it's like to be a working mother while your husband is campaigning, and also needing her help on the trail. It stands to reason that he should share some of the household responsibilities. Is Maureen Dowd envious that such a great man would be willing to help his wife?

"Emasculating"? Really?? Are there still people who think a man is less of a man if he contributes to the running of his household? How quaint! Us real women, however, are just happy to know he values his family enough to do his share. Thanks Michelle Obama for letting us know your husband lives in the 21st century - not the 18th!

Michelle casts "herself in the role of being the person in the life of the Illinois senator who cheerfully knocks him off his pedestal to remind him of his chores."

He isn't on a pedestal. He shouldn't have to be knocked off one. He comports himself with the arrogance of someone who has been annointed to something without having actually done anything. We need a person of the people - not another aristocrat in "just plain folks" clothing.

'The letter is aimed at small dollar ($50 to $100) donors. It seems keyed to females — of Barack she lovingly writes, "this is a special man."'


Does the fact that I got one of these solicitations mean that Ms. Obama knows about my crush on her husband?


Austin Mayor, good to hear from you.

Speaking of First Lady Michelle Obama:

Michelle Obama is a racial-minority individual, and in her heart and mind she inevitably does not endorse hate crimes committed by George W. Bush.

George W. Bush committed hate crimes of epic proportions and with the stench of terrorism (indicated in my blog).

George W. Bush did in fact commit innumerable hate crimes.

And I do solemnly swear by Almighty God that George W. Bush committed other hate crimes of epic proportions and with the stench of terrorism which I am not at liberty to mention.

Many people know what Bush did.

And many people will know what Bush did—even to the end of the world.

Bush was absolute evil.

Bush is now like a fugitive from justice.

Bush is a psychological prisoner.

Bush has a lot to worry about.

Bush can technically be prosecuted for hate crimes at any time.

In any case, Bush will go down in history in infamy.

Submitted by Andrew Yu-Jen Wang
B.S., Summa Cum Laude, 1996
Messiah College, Grantham, PA
Lower Merion High School, Ardmore, PA, 1993

I am not sure where I had read it before, but anyway, it is a linguistically excellent statement, and it goes kind of like this: “If only it were possible to ban invention that bottled up memories so they never got stale and faded.” Oh wait—off the top of my head—I think the quotation came from my Lower Merion High School yearbook.

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on May 10, 2007 3:14 PM.

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The Iraq Vote: Illinois Delegation roll calls on two Iraq bills: withdrawal and short-term war funding. is the next entry in this blog.

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