President Obama has a strong ally while he works through the bumpy rollout of his signature policy achievement: his wife.
First lady Michelle Obama hit the fundraising circuit Friday to help give her husband the Democrat-controlled Congress that could help him further his agenda, and didn't shy away from blasting her husband's opponents for shutting down the government in an ultimately fruitless attempt to stall or stop the Affordable Care Act Friday.
"So when a small group of folks in Congress shuts down our government to try to shut down Obamacare, and we watch as our president stands strong, that’s not just some political fight in Washington," she said at the Women's Leadership Forum Conference in DC. "It is a battle about our most fundamental values and aspirations."
"If you don’t like seeing folks in state government trying to undermine Obamacare or chip away at women’s rights and women’s health, then I urge you—let’s not just sit around feeling angry or helpless or hopeless, especially not [as] women,” she said. She encouraged members of the audience to write a "big old check" to help.
"The fact is that right now we are just 17 seats away from taking back the House--yes, 17. But they are 17 hard seats," she said. "And we’re just six seats away from losing the Senate. And that's how close these midterm elections are. And we all know that it’s not enough to elect Barack Obama if we don't give him a Congress that will help him keep moving this country forward."
She also extolled the benefits of Obamacare.
"I think it’s important for us to all remember who exactly is benefitting from this new law. They are folks who come from all across the country, who come from all different backgrounds and walks of life," she said, calling out the younger Americans, spouses of veterans, single months, and people with pre-existing conditions."
"So many of these people have been living from emergency to emergency," she added. "They’ve been ignoring their symptoms and just praying that nothing goes wrong."