Michelle Obama today said a new book alleging that she influenced President Obama’s choices on policy and staff was part of a long running effort to portray her as an “angry black woman.”
The book, “The Obamas” by New York Times reporter Jodi Kantor, reports that Michelle was critical of President Obama’s senior White House aides, regarding them as insular and insufficiently devoted to the president’s vision of “transformative” change. Michelle was in particular concerned about former Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel and believed the president needed a new team.
In an interview with CBS This Morning, Michelle said she had “never had a cross word” with Rahm but didn’t deny that she had found his leadership problematic and acknowledged that she in general made her views on matters clear to the president.
But the first lady also said the book’s author was trying to titillate by amping up the drama and was associating her with an unflattering racial stereotype.
I guess it’s more interesting to imagine this conflicted situation here and a strong woman and a – you know, but that’s been an image that people have tried to paint of me since the day Barack announced, that I’m some angry black woman.
Michelle was magnanimous toward former Press Secretary Robert Gibbs, who cursed the first lady during a staff meeting, calling him a good friend and saying, “we could go day to day and find the things people wish the didn’t say to each other.”
Here’s the interview if you want to take a look-see.