Michelle Obama rips Trump in new book

AP:

Former first lady Michelle Obama blasts President Donald Trump in her new book, writing how she reacted in shock the night she learned he would replace her husband in the Oval Office and tried to “block it all out.”

She also denounces Trump’s “birther” campaign questioning her husband’s citizenship, calling it bigoted and dangerous, “deliberately meant to stir up the wingnuts and kooks.”

In her memoir “Becoming,” set to come out Tuesday, Obama writes openly about everything from growing up in Chicago to confronting racism in public life to her amazement at becoming the country’s first black first lady. She also reflects on early struggles in her marriage to Barack Obama as he began his political career and was often away. She writes that they met with a counselor “a handful of times,” and she came to realize that she was more “in charge” of her happiness than she had realized. “This was my pivot point,” Obama explains. “My moment of self-arrest.”

Obama writes that she assumed Trump was “grandstanding” when he announced his presidential run in 2015. She expresses disbelief over how so many women would choose a “misogynist” over Hillary Clinton, “an exceptionally qualified female candidate.” She remembers how her body “buzzed with fury” after seeing the infamous “Access Hollywood” tape, in which Trump brags about sexually assaulting women.

She also accuses Trump of using body language to “stalk” Clinton during an election debate. She writes of Trump following Clinton around the stage, standing nearby and “trying to diminish her presence.”

Trump’s message, according to Obama, in words which appear in the book in darkened print: “I can hurt you and get away with it.”

The Associated Press purchased an early copy of “Becoming,” one of the most anticipated political books in recent memory. Obama is admired worldwide and has offered few extensive comments on her White House years. And memoirs by former first ladies, including Clinton and Laura Bush, are usually best-sellers.

Obama launches her promotional tour Tuesday not at a bookstore, but at Chicago’s United Center, where tens of thousands of people have purchased tickets — from just under $30 to thousands of dollars — to attend the event moderated by Oprah Winfrey. Other stops on a tour scaled to rock star dimensions are planned at large arenas from New York City’s Barclays Center to the Los Angeles Forum, with guests including Reese Witherspoon and Sarah Jessica Parker. While some fans have criticized the price as too high, 10 percent of tickets at each event are being donated to local charities, schools and community groups.

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