Team Obama is playing the “private citizen” card again to create a bubble of political protection around the profligate, policy activist First Lady.
We’ve seen it before.
When conservatives challenged Mrs. O’s caustic 2008 campaign trail statements disparaging America and fear-mongering for votes, her hubby invoked the “civilian” shield. He threatened Republicans to “lay off his wife”, arguing that political spouses should not be subject to public scrutiny because they didn’t choose public life.
Obama’s outspoken bitter half conscientiously and deliberately inserted herself into the public square long before the family moved to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue — whether it was organizing a Woods Fund panel with her husband and Weather Underground terrorist Bill Ayers, taking a publicly-subsidized government job with Chicago Mayor Richard Daley, parlaying her relationship with political mentor Valerie Jarrett into a cushy public job at the University of Chicago Medical Center, where she oversaw a patient-dumping scheme that benefited her political cronies, leveraging her hubby’s Senate victory to snag a lucrative seat on the corporate Board of Directors of TreeHouse Foods, Inc. despite having zero experience in the industry, publicly begrudging other Americans’ choices in how they earn their money, using her East Wing power to push Obamacare, or exploiting the bully pulpit to restrict food advertisers’ speech and serve the SEIU’s legislative agenda under the guise of fighting child obesity (more on this in the paperback version of Culture of Corruption).
She wants all of the cake of public and political life — and all the unfettered entitlement to stuff her face in front of us while we sit silently, respecting her “rights” as a “private citizen” to immunity from criticism.
When Michelle Obama stops using her public office to push new Big Government power grabs and redistribute wealth to her cronies (flashback: Chicago Obama-lympics), stoke racial grievances, and meddle in Obama administration personnel decisions that lead to whistleblower firings, I’ll leave her alone.
Until then, if she can’t stand the heat, perhaps the globe-trotting, paparazzi-magnet doyenne should avoid luxury foreign beach resorts in the dog days of August and cool her haute couture heels closer to home.
Tom Maguire on the jet-setting friends of Michelle O and the grief card:
AN EXPLANATION THAT DOESN’T EXPLAIN MUCH:
Michelle Obama returned to Washington on Sunday from five days on Spain’s Mediterranean coast, taking a mother-daughter trip with Sasha, 9, that stirred controversy. A White House source told me, however, that Mrs. Obama traveled to Spain to help a grieving friend deal with the death of her father.
…Mrs. Obama met two friends in Spain, who flew there on their own. The three women were joined by a total of four daughters. (Some news outlets reported Mrs. Obama was on vacation with 40 friends; that was not true.)
One of the women is a longtime Obama friend, Anita Blanchard, an obstetrician who delivered Sasha and big sister Malia, 12. Her husband is Marty Nesbitt [link], a close Obama friend and treasurer of Obama’s presidential campaign fund.
A White House source told me the Mrs. Obama was not able to attend the funeral for Blanchard’s father at the beginning of July. Blanchard, who was taking her daughter on a promised trip to Spain, asked the first lady and Sasha to come to Spain with her. (Malia is at overnight camp.) “She felt it was important as a dear friend to do this,” I was told.
Because nothing says “healing” like an international media circus with dozens of Secret Service agents, policeman and reporters around.
I accept that she could not dictate the venue to her friend. However, Ms. Obama could have politely declined, suggested an alternative site or time, or gone ahead and demonstrated that she both vacations and grieves in ways quite unfamiliar to most of us.
MORE: There is no question Ms. Blanchard and Michelle spend a lot of time together:
LYNN SWEET CHICAGO-CENTRIC FOOTNOTES:
1. Jarrett, the Whitakers, Nesbitt, Blanchard vacationed over the holidays with the Obama family in Hawaii. The same group also traveled to Oslo in December to see Obama pick up the Nobel Peace Prize.
The same group was also at the Nov. 24 State Dinner.
That was in addition to celebrating Michelle’s 46th together.
Anita Blanchard is a doctor at the University of Chicago Medical Center, where Mrs. Obama collected her hefty p.r. salary and engineered the patient-dumping scheme. Her hubby Marty Nesbitt chairs the Chicago Housing Authority, served on the Chicago failed Olympics bid, was a top fundraising chairman for Obama, and worked as an executive at one of subprime queen Penny Pritzker‘s companies.