Obama: Michelle will "never run for office"

How Putin wields his levers of power

Yesterday's joint campaign appearance with Democratic presidential nominee and former first lady Hillary Clinton in Winston-Salem, N.C., demonstrated why Obama is, and will continue to be, a highly valued Democratic surrogate.

Aiming to deliver a knockout blow to Donald Trump's staggering presidential campaign, Hillary Clinton turned to popular first lady Michelle Obama to rally voters in North Carolina.

Obama, 52, said of Clinton, "We want a president who takes this job seriously and has the temperament and maturity to do it well".

Mrs. Obama offered an impassioned tribute to Clinton, praising her as the most prepared candidate for the presidency ever, adding: "Yes, more than Barack, more than Bill". Clinton is perhaps one of the least traditional first ladies in modern history, while Obama has fully embraced tradition.

The Clinton campaign views North Carolina, a state that voted for Obama in 2008 and Republican Mitt Romney in 2012, as a must-win for Trump this year.

"Do not let yourself get exhausted or frustrated or discouraged by the negativity of this election, as you're out there working your hearts out for my girl", she said of Clinton. "We are going to Washington, DC".

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The emails were among thousands stolen from the private account of a top Clinton aide, part of a hacking the Democratic campaign has blamed on the Russians. A style icon and voice of reason, many would like to see her as a future president. Clinton asked the crowd of about 14,000 at Wake Forest University, where the two women campaigned together for the first time.

"Arizona is another battleground state that is now on the map", campaign manager Robby Mook told reporters aboard her plane as the candidate flew into Iowa, another swing state that had been leaning toward Trump but where the polls have tightened into almost a dead heat. Florida is one of just a handful of states that an Associated Press analysis rates as a toss-up between Clinton and Donald Trump. In July, Comey said there was evidence that Clinton and her staff may have broken laws, but that no reasonable prosecutor would bring charges.

But Clinton has expanded her narrow lead to 2.4 points in the southeastern state, where Republican leaders worry that Trump's slow collapse will hurt them in congressional races.

The Obama family's public role in the campaign marks a sharp contrast from two years ago, when he was unpopular and Democrats winced when he occasionally said his policies were on the ballot in the midterms.

The differences between Clinton's and Mrs. Obama's tenures speak in some ways to the differences in their generations Clinton representing the first wave of baby boomers eager to push boundaries, while Obama benefited from lessons learned, noted Carl Sferrazza Anthony, a historian at the National First Ladies Library. A powerful orator with an ability to connect with her audience and draw the voters Clinton has struggled with - women, African Americans and the young.

"Just for the record, in this country, the United States of America, the voters decide elections", the first lady said. But she's consistently expressed a distaste for politics, even revealing she didn't want her husband to enter political life. But the campaign knows Michelle Obama is the one with the star power.

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