Former First Lady Michelle Obama said on Saturday evening that President Donald Trump’s inauguration “was not reflective of the country” while speaking to Gayle King at Essence Fest in New Orleans.
Obama spoke about how emotional she was during Trump’s inauguration because she had to move her two children out of the only house they had really known before having to listen to “that speech.”
“Then to sort of sit at that inauguration and to look around at a crowd that was not reflective of the country,” Obama said. “It was just such the opposite… During Barack’s inauguration, we made sure that the crowd looked like all of America. Having the Tuskegee airmen, having civil rights folks, having folks who had marched. You could look out at his crowd and you would see America. All of it.”
Obama said she was just “one of a handful of people of color” at the inauguration and “it was a lot emotionally.”
“And I had to sit in that audience, one of a handful of people of color, and then listen to that speech, and all that I had sort of held on to for eight years, watching my husband get raked over the coals, feeling like we had to do everything perfectly, no scandal, no nothing,” she said. “It was a lot emotionally.”
Obama added that she was exhausted after eight years of thinking she and her husband had to be “better than perfect to even be considered equal.”
“So by the time I got on the plane, it was a release of eight years of having to try to show up, as we all know we have to do, we have to show up not only perfectly but a little bit better than perfect to even be considered equal,” she said. “And it was an exhaustion of eight years of that.”