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Michelle Obama praises husbands character


LOS ANGELES, Calif.–First lady Michelle Obama spoke at a luncheon campaign fundraiser at the Calabasas home of actors Will and Jada Pinkett Smith and taped an appearance on the ABC late-night talk show “Jimmy Kimmel Live” today.

Early in her half-hour speech, Obama told the crowd of about 250 at the fundraiser that she fell in love with Barack Obama because of his character.

“I love that when I met Barack that he was so committed to serving others that he turned down high-paying jobs and instead started his career working to get folks back to work in struggling communities,” she said. “I love that Barack was so devoted to his family, especially the women in his life.

“I saw the respect that he had for his mother. I saw how proud he was that she was able to put herself through school and still take care of him and his sister as a single mom.

“I saw the tenderness that he felt for his grandmother. I saw how grateful he was that long after this woman should have retired, she was still waking up every morning, catching that bus to her job at the community bank, doing whatever she cold to support her family.”

Michelle Obama also recounted her husband’s accomplishments in office, including passage of health care legislation and the improving economy, and asked those in attendance to participate in get-out-the-vote efforts in the final days of the campaign.

Turning out the vote also was part of Obama’s appearance on “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” appearing in a sketch where she went into the host’s bedroom with a bullhorn and airhorn, attempting to get him out and bed and to the polls.

The appearance was Michelle Obama’s first on “Jimmy Kimmel Live.”

Her visit came one day after President Barack Obama spent two-and-a-half hours in the Los Angeles area to tape an appearance on NBC’s “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.”