Michelle Obama tunes into Scandal, doesn't expect a big Valentine's Day

McClatchy Washington BureauJanuary 30, 2014 

APTOPIX State of Union

Craig Remsburg, father of Army Ranger Sgt. 1st Class Cory Remsburg, center, watches as his son acknowledges applause from first lady Michelle Obama and others during President Barack Obama's State of the Union address on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday Jan. 28, 2014.


First Lady Michelle Obama told Ryan Seacrest she's expecting a low key Valentine's Day at the White House after an epic 50th birthday party at the White House.

The remarks came in a wide-ranging interview in which the first lady -- traveling on the West Coast -- put in a plug for Obama's signature health care law and noted that her signature program, Let's Move, is an example "of all that you can get done without congressional action."

Obama in his State of the Union address Tuesday night singled out the program as he pledged to act when Congress won't.

She pressed for young people to sign up for the health care law, saying they think themselves invincible, but aren't.

"Young people lead risky lives," she said. "You cut yourself because you're just learning how to cook...life throws you some curveballs."

Obama also gave a look at life in the White House, saying the family eats dinner together every night and that she and the president work out together every morning. Her workout is about 90 minutes, she said, including 45 minutes of cardio. (Though she admitted to a dietary "fall off the wagon" occasionally, saying she had a few cookies in the station's green room.)

She said the private residence serves as a "safe space for family" for times when Obama gets his “butt kicked,” she joked.

"This is what we do during good times and bad," she said. "We usually make sure our home is a safe space for family, so that when Barack comes off the elevator and walks in the door, he’s just Dad. And the girls are really good at that because they’re more concerned about their issues. Like, ‘Oh, Dad, tough luck! By the way, where’s my allowance?' "

She talked about raising the girls -- now 12 and 15 -- and what Obama's reaction will be when they start dating.

"I don't know what his strategy is, we haven't really talked about it," she said

She also comped to binge watching Scandal, telling Seacrest she hadn’t watched it until this past December when the family spent several hours on the flight to Hawaii.

"I love Kerry Washington. She is amazing, so it makes the show fun," Obama said.

As for Valentine's Day, she said she had a "big birthday celebration" -- guests included Beyonce -- so "I think we’re going to low-key it for Valentine’s Day.”

But she said the president "never forgets a Valentine’s Day, an anniversary, a birthday. He’s really good at that kind of stuff.”

Obama traveled to Los Angeles on Wednesday, raising money for the Democratic National Committee Wednesday night. She was to attend "political events" in San Francisco before returning to Washington.

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