While former first lady Michelle Obama has repeatedly dismissed rumors that she has any interest in seeking public office, one recent move has led some to speculate that she is nonetheless wading into the political realm ahead of Election Day.
Jeva Lange, a columnist for The Week, pointed out that Obama’s new podcast series “sounds suspiciously like a stump speech.”
“Practically a golden ticket”
In a piece published on Wednesday, Lange described the Michelle Obama Podcast, which debuted on Spotify earlier this month, as a vehicle to highlight the host’s “innate gift for spinning her biography into political issues and advocacy — a talent that is hard to come by (Hillary Clinton struggled with it) but practically a golden ticket for a politician.”
The content, however, would be more at home on a campaign stage, she argued.
“Obama, for example, discusses her Leave It to Beaver-esque childhood, smoothly evoking the unifying vision her husband sold,” Lange wrote.
The former first lady went on to stress the “principle that we are each other’s brother’s and sister’s keepers,” which she said represented the values she learned as a child.
While Obama has sold her new venture as a way to discuss relationships through the lens of her own personal life, Lange argued that “it quickly becomes clear that there’s a bigger picture.”
“Much more gratifying”
Citing evidence from the podcast, she wrote that Obama declared humans were not “built to do this thing called life in a vacuum,” instead advising that it “is much more helpful, it is much more gratifying, much more effective to live this life as ‘we.'”
Declaring it a “good line” for the new podcast host, Lange concluded that Obama “should have saved it for the convention speech.”
A grassroots push to draft Obama as presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s running mate appears to have failed, though the former vice president made it clear that he would relish the idea of campaigning with her.
Asserting in April that he would add her to the ticket “in a heartbeat,” Biden went on to describe her as a “brilliant” and “fine woman” who “knows the way around.”
While Obama might be the candidate Biden needs to inject some enthusiasm into his campaign, it appears that she is more comfortable as a podcast host — at least for now.