Posts Tagged ‘pasadena

14
Jun
11

‘imprinted on his heart’

First Lady Michelle Obama, Pasadena, June 13: ….. “let me tell you something about your President … when he returns home after a long day traveling around the country …. he always tells me not about how hard the day was but about the people he’s met along the way.

And I see in those quiet moments late at night, after we’ve put the girls to bed, and he’s hunched over his desk, and he’s reading everything – letters people have sent him.  That’s what keeps him motivated. He reads those letters. A letter from the woman dying of cancer whose health insurance wouldn’t cover her care. Those are the letters he’s reading …

And I see the sadness and the worry that’s creasing his face. And I hear the passion and the determination in his voice. He says, “You know, Mich, you won’t believe what these folks are going through.”  He says, “It’s not right. Still not right. And we’ve got to fix this. We have to do more.”

…..when it comes to the people he meets and the stories he hears, he has a memory like a steel trap ….  if he’s had a few minutes and a decent conversation, he will never forget your story.  It becomes imprinted on his heart.  And that is what he carries with him every day – that collection of hopes, and dreams, and struggles.

…. Starting first thing in the morning and going late into the night, hunched over every briefing, he reads every word of every memo so that he is more prepared than the people briefing him, writing notes, asking questions. That is who your President is. That’s who you elected, because all those wins and losses, trust me, are not wins and losses for him. They’re wins and losses for the folks whose stories he carries with him, the folks he worries about and prays about before he goes to bed at night.

….here’s the thing about Barack – and this is something I’d appreciate even if he hadn’t shown the good judgment to marry me. (Laughter and applause.) But even in the toughest moments …. when it seems like all is lost, and we’re all wringing our hands, and I’ve done it to him, too – what’s going to happen, are we going to be okay – (laughter) – Barack Obama never loses sight of the end goal. He is always an end-goal game player. He’s not looking right here. He’s looking way down the road. (Applause.) And he never lets himself get distracted by the chatter and the noise. It doesn’t faze him. He just keeps moving forward, step by step. That’s how change happens. (Applause.)

And in those moments when we’re all sweating it, when we’re worried that that bill won’t pass, or the negotiations might fall through, Barack always reminds me that we’re playing a long game here. That’s how he reassures me. It’s not about today. It’s about our future. It’s about these kids. It’s not about us.

He reminds me that change is slow. Nothing worth having happens in an instant. He reminds me that change does not happen all at once. It never does. Never has. But he tells me that if we keep showing up, right, if we keep fighting the good fight, and doing what we know is right, then eventually we will get there, because we always have. When you think about it, we always have gotten to the right place in this country.

And that’s what he needs from you. All of you.

Read the full speech here

13
Jun
11

‘i see the sadness and worry that’s creasing his face’

…with California Air National Guard Capt. Kelly Smith during a Joining Forces event in Beverly Hills, California, June 13

Sun Times: Pool report from First Lady Michelle Obama’s Pasadena funder: About 500 people gathered on the ample lawn behind the Pasadena home of Ann and Robert Hamilton for a lunch-time fundraiser …The First Lady spoke for about 25 minutes….

Lena Kennedy, the co-chair of the event, introduced her as “the not-so-secret weapon of the President of the United States.”

…She began by recounting her husband’s journey to the White House, beginning with the moment he told her he wanted to run for President.

”I wasn’t exactly thrilled at the idea,” she said. “I still had some cynicism about politics, that was my hesitation.”

 But she said she was transformed on the campaign trail after hearing the stories of everyday Americas….

Obama then listed some of the things her husband has done in office during his first two years. “We’ve gone from an economy that was on the brink of collapse to an economy that is starting to grow again,” she said.

 She also mentioned healthcare reform, the passage of the Lilly Ledbetter Act and the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell…..

….The First Lady talked about the toll that his work had taken on her husband. “I see the sadness and worry that’s creasing his face,” she said.

She described his work ethic as tireless. “He reads every word, every memo, so he is better prepared than the people briefing him,” she said. “This man doesn’t take a day off.”

Obama said the next few years of campaigning would be difficult at times for the Obamas and their supporters. “It is not going to be easy, and it is going to be long,” she said. “Now more than ever we need you help to finish what we started.”




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