- REUTERS/Gary Cameron
First lady Michelle Obama charged into the 2016 election fray Monday night at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia with a rousing speech that tore into Donald Trump without ever mentioning his name.
Obama framed her argument around her children, implicitly making the point that Trump, who officially accepted the Republican nomination for president at the party’s convention last week, would be a poor role model for kids.
“Our motto is, when they go low, we go high,” Obama said. “With every word we utter, with every action we take, we know our kids are watching us. We as parents are their most important role models.”
She continued: “This November, when we go to the polls, that is what we’re deciding … In this election, and every election, is about who will have the power to shape our children for the next four or eight years of their lives.”
Obama also offered a strong endorsement of Hillary Clinton, who is poised to accept the Democratic nomination for president this week.
“I am here tonight because in this election, there is only one person who I trust with that responsibility,” she said. “Only one person who I believe is truly qualified to be president of the United States. And that is our friend, Hillary Clinton.”
Obama also took a shot at Trump’s notorious Twitter antics and recited the party line about preventing him from getting his hands on the nuclear codes.
“I want … someone who understands that the issues a president faces are not black and white and cannot be boiled down to 140 characters,” she said. “Because when you have the nuclear codes at your fingertips and the military in your command, you can’t make snap decisions. You can’t have a thin skin or tendency to lash out. You need to be steady and measured and well-informed.”
She then trained her fire on Trump’s campaign slogan, “Make America Great Again.”
“Don’t let anyone tell you that this country isn’t great,” Obama said. “That we need to make it great again. This right now is the greatest country on earth.”
The Clinton campaign has also framed some of its argument against Trump around children.
In a televised campaign ad released earlier this month, children are shown watching Trump’s speeches and rallies on TV as some of the brash billionaire’s more controversial comments play in the background. The ad observes: “Our children are watching. What example will we set for them?”
President Barack Obama offered praise of his wife on Twitter after her speech:
Incredible speech by an incredible woman. Couldn’t be more proud & our country has been blessed to have her as FLOTUS. I love you, Michelle.
— President Obama (@POTUS44) July 26, 2016