Michelle Obama slammed Donald Trump on Friday over his previous questions about President Barack Obama’s birthplace.
In a speech at George Mason University, the first lady criticized the Republican presidential nominee’s assertions that her husband was not born in the US, despite evidence to the contrary.
“Then, of course, there were those who questioned, and who continue to question for the past eight years, and up to this very day, whether my husband was even born in this country,” Obama said, alluding to Trump’s questions. “Well, during his time in office, I think Barack has answered those questions with the examples he set, by going high when they go low. And he’s answered these questions with the progress we’ve achieved together.”
Obama’s comments came several hours after Trump announced that after years of publicly questioning Obama’s birthplace, he now believes Obama was born in the US.
During Friday’s speech, the first lady laid into Trump’s temperament, calling the real-estate magnate “erratic” and “threatening,” and telling the audience that “a president can’t just pop off.”
The first lady lauded Hillary Clinton, arguing that she is one of the most qualified people to ever seek the presidency, but also acknowledged that many voters feel pessimistic about the way the election has played out in the media.
“As you are working your heart out for Hillary, if you start to feel tired or discouraged by all the negativity in this election. If you want to hide under the bed until it’s all over, I want you to remember what’s at stake,” Obama said, rattling off numerous Obama administration positions that Trump has promised to roll back.
She also attempted to counter Trump’s vision of a worsening America, echoing her comments at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia in which she touted herself and her husband as examples of American economic opportunity.
“We live in a country where a girl like me from the South Side of Chicago whose great-great-grandfather was a slave could go to some of the finest universities on earth. We live in a country where a biracial kid from Hawaii named Barack Obama, the son of a single mother, can become president,” Obama said, citing the ability for immigrants to come to the US and achieve economic success.
Obama’s speech came as the Clinton campaign deployed high-profile surrogates to key battleground states amid the Democratic presidential nominee’s sinking poll numbers.