“When they go low, we go high.” This is the woman I knew as a bright young law student named Michelle Robinson. And this is the essence of the woman who is one of the most open-hearted and effective First Ladies our nation has ever seen.

Michelle Obama is the woman who so eloquently and emotionally articulated why her fellow First Lady, Hillary Clinton, is the most qualified candidate for the presidency of the United States. Why the historic nature of Hillary’s candidacy and potential to be the first woman President of the United States is so significant and shouldn’t be taken for granted. And why America is the greatest nation on earth, full of promise and hope, in stark contrast to Donald’s dystopian distortion.

Michelle Robinson Obama has always been a First Lady, in her own way. At least for as long as I have known her.

We met as classmates at Harvard Law School. Tall, lanky, with a quick, dry wit, a sharp intellect, and a warm demeanor. No pretense, but broad priorities that always extended beyond herself, no matter what she was going through.

ginger and flotus

My memories of Michelle always involve humor. Michelle can tease you in a such a good-natured way, and then immediately turn the humor on herself, that she breaks down barriers and creates instant connections.

She is exactly the same now as she was then. And then some. Because with every word and action, she lives up to America’s promise and the importance of the position she inherited when she joined her husband on his journey to the White House. She takes nothing for granted and never forgets where she came from or the plight of others who haven’t made it as far as she has in her life.

And she has a huge heart. Despite the bitter nature of the campaign between her husband and Hillary, Michelle Obama — just like the Michelle Robinson I knew — sees connections, not craters. Perhaps like no other speaker we have heard in this campaign, she presented the most compelling, caring, and urgent case for her fellow First Lady, concluding with this:

“Because of Hillary Clinton, my daughters and all our sons and daughters now take for granted that a woman can be President of the United States.”

(AP Photo)