Michelle shares her thoughts on the loss of the great Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
“It makes it plain that we cannot take this election for granted,” she said. “Not now. Not ever.”
As the nation continues to mourn the death of Supreme Court Justice and pop culture icon Ruth Bader Ginsburg, former First Lady Michelle Obama shared some words about the “icon,” “role model,” and “dear friend” with late-night host Conan O’Brien.
O’Brien, who conducted the lengthy interview for the Wednesday night episode of Conan, had mentioned earlier how his mother was one of the first women to attend Yale Law. “I think about that and about the determination and the sheer intelligence it took for people like Justice Ginsburg, and your mother, and so many other women — well, not many of them because there are very few of them in that generation — who were at the frontlines of opening up opportunities for all of us,” Obama said.
“Her entire legal career, her time on the Supreme Court really pushed open a new set of possibilities for women all over the country and all over the world,” she continued. “And to lose that kind of icon in this time that we’re in, because we’re facing some difficult times, it’s heartbreaking but it should also be eyeopening.”
While Obama is used to speaking about the importance of voting, especially during an election year, she said sometimes the power of a president to appoint Supreme Court Justices “doesn’t feel real to people.”
“It’s not motivating enough because they’re like, ‘What does this mean?'” she said. “But now that we’ve lost this icon, and the balance of power in the Supreme Court lays in the hands of this sitting president and will impact the lives of young people for generations to come, it is all too real what having someone like her on the Court has meant. But it makes it plain that we cannot take this election for granted. Not now. Not ever.”
TBS shared the full interview of Michelle being interviewed by her friend Conan O’Brien.
Conan is joined by former First Lady Michelle Obama to talk about what it’s like to quarantine with the Obama’s, what Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s legacy means to her, and the importance of voting in every election. PLUS: Conan and Mrs. Obama surprise a group of young “When We All Vote” volunteers.
Get registered to vote, check your status, and more @ https://www.whenweallvote.org.
Michelle did an appearance on Conan and talked about social distancing with her family and how her girls are a bit done with being stuck with mom & dad.
Like many families across the United States, the Obamas are feeling the effects of social distancing at home for months during the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Michelle Obama virtually joined Conan O’Brien on his talk show Wednesday and shared with the comedian that while the family has enjoyed spending some unexpected time together at the beginning of the pandemic, the novelty has begun to wear off.
Michelle, 56, explained that in the “early stages” of the stay-at-home orders, she, husband Barack Obama and daughters Sasha, 19, and Malia, 22, “were all excited to be together.”
“We were being all organized and we would spend the days apart doing our respective work — the girls were still in classes in the spring — and so we would be working and then doing a little exercise, and then come together in the evenings,” she explained. “And we would have these activities — we would have cocktails, and then we would work puzzles, and play games.”
“Barack taught the girls how to play spades,” Michelle said. “We actually had some organized things — like we had an art exhibit day, where we all went off and did like water color paintings and then we showed it.”
“Now, Conan, this was in the early stages,” Michelle underscored, joking that as the weeks turned into months, Sasha and Malia became less enthralled with spending so much time at home.
“I think first our kids got a little sick of us … which was fine, ’cause we were pretty much sick of them,” she said. “And so the summer started happening, and then we could be outside a little bit more, and we came to the vineyard, where we still are, and so there’s more room to roam around … that was good, ’cause it helped us break it up. And now the kids are back in Zoom land with classes. They’re doing it remotely. And they’re no longer thrilled about being with us.”
Michelle also joked that Barack, 59, has had “limited time” to get on her “nerves” because he’s been busy most of the summer completing his book, which is set to be released after the presidential election in November.
Michelle and O’Brien, 57, discussed the Becoming author’s When We All Vote campaign and the importance of every vote in the election between Donald Trump and Joe Biden.
“Every vote absolutely matters,” she said, before she and O’Brien surprised some When We All Vote volunteers on Zoom.
“The work that you’re doing couldn’t be more important,” Michelle told the group. “I am so proud of you, and it’s like, when I see your faces, that makes me want to work harder, because I think you all deserve leadership that reflects who you all are.”
“Keep working hard, please,” she added before signing off.
Earlier on Wednesday, Michelle said that Malia and Sasha are “itching” to get back to their respective college campuses, but that it’s “not quite safe” yet because of COVID-19.
“I’m just glad that they’re staying put, even if they’re sick of me,” she said during an Instagram Live with Jennifer Lopez, which was part of the former first lady’s National Voter Registration Day Instagram takeover.
The “Get Registered & Ready” livestream served as a means of spreading the word about the importance of registering and voting in the upcoming presidential election on November 3.
Conan airs Monday through Thursday nights on TBS at 11 pm ET.
The former First Lady muses on what makes a house a home in the foreword for interior designer Michael S. Smith’s Designing History: The Extraordinary Art & Style of the Obama White House
When The Obamas moved into the White House in 2008, former First Lady Michelle Obama had one concern: making sure her daughters, then 7 and 10 years old, felt at home.
Interior designer Michael S. Smith helped her achieve that and more, she reveals in the foreword of his new book, Designing History: The Extraordinary Art & Style of the Obama White House.
“Immediately, he understood that we were a young family with two little girls who preferred Crate & Barrel over antique credenzas and a grandmother who bristled a bit at any whiff of pomp,” she writes in the design tome, out September 1. “But we were also the Obamas: the first Black residents of the White House.”
She praises Smith for the balance he ultimately struck in the space.
“The pressure on any First Family is enormous. The pressure on the first Black one would be even greater. Michael never lost sight of that,” she writes. “He made sure our values and vision for America—one based in inclusivity and a love for all of its people—were reflected in every detail of this remarkable home.”
Smith’s other clients include George Clooney, Harrison Ford and Shonda Rhimes. His good friend former Architectural Digest Editor in Chief Margaret Russell also contributed to the book.
Exploring what home has meant to her over the years and throughout her childhood in Chicago, Obama, 56, writes, “Home was a specific place, with specific people and specific memories. But more than that, it was a specific feeling. It was comfort and warmth and security, an enveloping richness of our family’s story.”
The Becoming author strove to recreate that environment for her daughters Sasha and Malia, now 19 and 22, as they grew up, explaining, “My husband and I had done our best to achieve it in our home in Chicago, but when the vortex of a presidential campaign concluded and sent our family to the White House, my biggest worry was the most basic: Would our daughters be able to have a childhood that in any way approached normalcy?”
She goes on to note that while the White House is both an “office” and a “museum,” it’s also “a place where real families with real lives spend four or eight years together, in and out of the spotlight.”
With that in mind, “in addition to its vital role in our democracy, I also needed the space to play a very practical purpose,” she explains. “A place where our girls could sprawl out on the floor with their Polly Pockets and stuffed animals, where they could invite friends over for popcorn and a movie, where they could play ball in the halls and go outside to play in the snow.”
One of Smith’s most practical updates was to the “old-school” lighting throughout the private residence.
When the Obamas moved in, most of the rooms were still lit primarily by crystal chandeliers. “These chandeliers are gorgeous works of art unto themselves, but they weren’t always the most practical choices for bringing warm light into a family space or illuminating the masterpieces hanging in our halls,” Obama explains. Smith brought in some modern recessed lighting and added dimmers in some of their personal spaces.
The Michelle Obama Podcast host continues, “That’s the magic of Michael—shining a light on the past to bring more life to the present.”
Beyond the upgrades in lighting and “meticulous research” that went into furnishing the residence with the work of American artists and craftspeople, what Obama appreciated the most was how the Los Angeles-based interior designer helped to make their house feel like a home.
“From his very first projects, Michael helped us foster the warmth and comfort for our family that I’d hoped. Our daughters had rooms to call their own, where they could swap out a great work of art for a poster or a photo of their friends,” she writes, painting a picture of what her family life in the White House was like. “There were cozy couches to cuddle up with our dogs, Bo and Sunny, after a long day. And I had my own space where I could hide out in sweatpants and catch up on bad TV.”
With Smith’s help, “The residence became a true refuge where our family could simply be a family, where our girls could grow into young women with voices of their own,” Obama writes. “What I know now is that home isn’t somewhere you go — it’s something you create.”
Tomorrow morning Michelle’s releases her newest episode of the Michelle Obama Podcast this time she sits down with Conan OBrein and Esquire gives us a sneak peek.
In the newest episode of Obama’s podcast, the O’Brien explains why it’s not the worst thing to be unfunny—or un-famous—at home.
he Michelle Obama Podcast is already five episodes in— and the former First Lady has already had quite a few public figures open up about things we’ve hardly heard them discuss on such a massive platform before. There’s journalist Michele Norris, Dr. Sharon Malone, and of course, Obama’s husband, former U.S. President Barack Obama.
Next up? In the next episode of The Michelle Obama Podcast, which drops Wednesday morning at 5 a.m., Obama interviews a man with a pretty popular podcast himself—comedian Conan O’Brien. In an exclusive clip from the new episode, called My Gravity, Obama and O’Brien talk about the importance of having a spouse who doesn’t fawn over you, when you’re a celebrity—or even treat you like one.
“I’ve had the experience of doing a week of shows at the Chicago Theater and I walk out every night and there’s lines around the block… and then walking into a room with my wife, and she’s not having any of it,” O’Brien says. “I find it to be life saving… the fact that, that, your husband has this relationship with you, and with your daughters, where you guys are not saluting him. In fact, You’re trying to push him out a window occasionally.”
“Right, he is the butt of every joke at the table,” Obama quips back.
You might be used to O’Brien in his goofy, one-joke-per-10-seconds mode you’ll usually find him in during one of his Conan remotes. So it’s a refreshing change of pace to hear him be a little more meditative (but of course, still a riot) with Obama. In the rest of the episode, Obama and O’Brien talk about what it means to have gravity in your home life, from both your wife and children.
“I could go out in front of an audience and have an amazing transcendent experience, where people are bowing to me and saying that was so… and not that this has ever happened, but, like, Wow, a great experience,” O’Brien says. “And then I can walk into this room, and these people are my gravity. They’re saying, ‘No, we know you, we’ve seen you be, really unfunny, at the breakfast table.’”
Elle gives us a highlight from Michelle’s newest Podcast – Episode Five.
Michelle Obama spoke candidly about experiencing racism as a Black woman in America, both in and out of the White House, on the latest episode of The Michelle Obama Podcast. On the episode, she also spoke with her longtime pals—Kelly Dibble, Denielle Pemberton-Heard, and Dr. Sharon Malone—about the power of their friendships.
When the recent incident involving a white woman calling 911 on a Black bird watcher in New York City’s Central Park came up, the discussion turned to racism. “That incident in Central Park, which infuriated all of us, as we watched it, it was not unfamiliar,” Obama said. “I mean, this is what the white community doesn’t understand about being a person of color in this nation, is that there are daily slights. In our workplaces, where people talk over you, or people don’t even see you.”
Obama said that even from her eight years as First Lady of the United States, she had “a number of stories” of white people treating her as invisible. “When I’ve been completely incognito during the eight years in the White House, walking the dogs on the canal, people will come up and pet my dogs, but will not look me in the eye. They don’t know it’s me,” she recalled, later adding, “That is so telling of how white America views people who are not like them, like we don’t exist. And when we do exist, we exist as a threat. And that’s exhausting.”
One such incident involved not only Obama and Pemberton-Heard, but Malia, 22, and Sasha, 19. Obama recounted a time that the four women got ice cream at a Haagen-Dazs during Barack Obama’s presidency. “We had just finished taking the girls to a soccer game. We were stopping to get ice cream and I had told the Secret Service to stand back, because we were trying to be normal, trying to go in,” Obama remembered. “There was a line, and… when I’m just a Black woman, I notice that white people don’t even see me. They’re not even looking at me.”
She continued, “So I’m standing there with two little Black girls, another Black female adult, they’re in soccer uniforms, and a white woman cuts right in front of us to order. Like, she didn’t even see us. The girl behind the counter almost took her order. And I had to stand up ’cause I know Denielle was like, ‘Well, I’m not gonna cause a scene with Michelle Obama.’ So I stepped up and I said, ‘Excuse me? You don’t see us four people standing right here? You just jumped in line?'”
The Becoming author added: “She didn’t apologize, she never looked me in my eye, she didn’t know it was me. All she saw was a Black person, or a group of Black people, or maybe she didn’t even see that. Because we were that invisible.”
Amid an unprecedented chapter in the Black Lives Matter movement, Obama said she has leaned on her friend group—particularly the Black women in it—for support. “My girlfriend group, while it is diverse, it has been so important for me to have Black women in my crew,” she said. “There’s just a certain relief that comes when you don’t have to walk into your friend group and explain yourself.” Obama concluded, “My group of female friends aren’t calling me to say, ‘What can I do?’ They’re calling me to say, ‘How you doin’ girl? Let’s talk.'”
CNN shares the fun news that the West Wing cast is coming back together to support the When We All Vote Movement.
Add “The West Wing” to the list of TV reunions in the age of coronavirus, but this time, they’re coming together for a specific cause: To benefit Michelle Obama’s voter-participation organization When We All Vote by staging an episode for the streaming service HBO Max.
The service announced that series creator Aaron Sorkin and the cast would unite for a staged theatrical presentation of the “Hartsfield’s Landing” episode from the Emmy-winning drama’s third season.
According to HBO Max, the event — which will be shot in a Los Angeles theater over several days in October — will be directed by Thomas Schlamme, who masterminded the White House drama’s walk-and-talk style. The program is expected to air on an as-yet-unspecified date prior to the election in November.
Sorkin also has a theatrical background, including the play “A Few Good Men” and the acclaimed recent Broadway revival of “To Kill a Mockingbird.” He’s writing additional original material as part of the special.
“The West Wing” aired on NBC but was produced by Warner Bros. Television, which, like CNN, is a unit of WarnerMedia, which will make a donation to When We All Vote in conjunction with the effort. When We All Vote is a nonprofit organization, created to inspire increased voter participation in every election.
Rob Lowe, Dulé Hill, Allison Janney, Janel Moloney, Richard Schiff, Bradley Whitford and Martin Sheen will reprise their roles for the special, which will include additional guest appearances and a message from co-chair Michelle Obama.
Originally broadcast in 2002, the episode focuses on a tense moment in US-Chinese relations over Taiwan, while Whitford’s character, Josh, worries about a small town in New Hampshire whose voting results are believed to predict who will win the state’s primary.
The full seven-season run of “The West Wing,” which premiered in 1999, is currently available on Netflix. But all the studios have used their own libraries to beef up their streaming services, and the series is expected to shift to HBO Max at some point in the future.
Other series that have mounted reunions since the pandemic began include NBC specials devoted to “Parks and Recreation” — which benefited the charity Feed America — and “30 Rock,” which served as a cheeky promotion for the network’s upfront presentation.
In honor of the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, which gave women the right to vote, several powerful women are coming together this week to empower others to register to vote. When We All Vote, a non-profit launched in 2018 by Michelle Obama, is holding a week-long “week of action” featuring celebrities like Meghan Markle, with a goal of registering more women to vote.
The When All Women Vote Week of Action began on August 17 with nightly, virtual panels and parties, focusing “on voter registration and turnout, and celebrating the women of color who have fought and continue to fight for their right to vote since the amendment’s passage,” according to the event’s website.
On Thursday, the organization will host a virtual “Couch Party” featuring Meghan, Duchess of Sussex. A live stream of the event will begin at 5 p.m. ET.
United State of Women Co-Chair Valerie Jarrett, as well as Glamour Magazine Editor-in-Chief Samantha Barry and actress Yvette Nicole Brown, will be present for the online event, which will feature a set from DJ Diamond Kuts.
For the 2018 election, When We All Vote organized thousands of local voter registration events and texted nearly four million voters about voting resources. This year, it is focusing on fair and safe elections during the coronavirus pandemic by supporting the expansion of access to vote-by-mail, early in-person voting and online voter registration so every American can make their voices heard on Election Day.
When We All Vote is co-chaired by famous faces like Tom Hanks, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Janelle Monáe, Chris Paul, Faith Hill, Selena Gomez, Liza Koshy, Megan Rapinoe, Shonda Rhimes, Tracee Ellis Ross, Kerry Washington and Rita Wilson.
The organization partnered with The United State of Women for this year’s week of action. The week-long event coincides with the Democratic National Convention, which is also being held virtually and during which Michelle Obama spoke.
“If you think things cannot possibly get worse, trust me, they can; and they will if we don’t make a change in this election,” she said in an impassioned speech on Tuesday. “If we have any hope of ending this chaos, we have got to vote for Joe Biden like our lives depend on it.”
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📣 We are SO excited to announce that ✨Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex✨ is joining the #WhenAllWomenVote Couch Party with @USOwomen alongside @glamourmag editor-in-chief @sambarry, our Board Chair @valeriebjarrett, @yvettenicolebrown, & @djdiamondkuts 👏. Save your spot NOW with the link in our bio.
Former first lady Michelle Obama addressed Democrats on Aug. 17 during the first night of the Democratic National Convention. The coronavirus pandemic upended both parties’ traditional conventions. Instead of in-person events, the program each night features a number of speakers and musical performances virtually across the country.
The New York Times did this highlight from Michelle’s most recent podcast and Michelle’s discussing her mental health.
In her new podcast, the former first lady connected her experience with the effects of quarantine and news about civil unrest and politics.
Michelle Obama said this week that she was experiencing “low-grade depression” and seemed to suggest that it was because of a combination of quarantine, racial unrest and the Trump administration’s response to the pandemic.
In the second episode of her new podcast, which was released on Wednesday, Mrs. Obama, the former first lady, told the Washington Post columnist Michele Norris that she has had low points recently.
“There have been periods throughout this quarantine where I just have felt too low,” Mrs. Obama said, adding that her sleep was off. “You know, I’ve gone through those emotional highs and lows that I think everybody feels, where you just don’t feel yourself.”
“I know that I am dealing with some form of low-grade depression,” she added. “Not just because of the quarantine, but because of the racial strife, and just seeing this administration, watching the hypocrisy of it, day in and day out, is dispiriting.”
She suggested that her depression was related to the ongoing protests and racial unrest around the United States since the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody in May.
“I have to say, that waking up to the news, waking up to how this administration has or has not responded, waking up to yet another story of a Black man or a Black person somehow being dehumanized or hurt or killed, or falsely accused of something, it is exhausting,” she said. “It has led to a weight that I haven’t felt in my life — in, in a while.”
Mrs. Obama said she had benefited from keeping a routine, including exercise, getting fresh air and having a regular dinner time.
The psychological effects of the pandemic are not yet fully clear. But the World Health Organization warned in May of a “massive increase in mental health conditions in the coming months,” fueled by anxiety and isolation as well as by the fear of contagion and the deaths of relatives and friends.Read More