- The Washington Times - Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Former first lady Michelle Obama said President Trump’s refusal to concede the election to Democrat Joseph R. Biden and cooperate with a transition is putting “our country’s health and security in danger.”

“The presidency doesn’t belong to any one individual or any one party,” Mrs. Obama said on Instagram. “To pretend that it does, to play along with these groundless conspiracy theories — whether for personal or political gain — is to put our country’s health and security in danger. This isn’t a game.”

She urged “all Americans, especially our nation’s leaders, regardless of party, to honor the electoral process and do your part to encourage a smooth transition of power, just as sitting presidents have done throughout our history.”

Mrs. Obama said she was “hurt and disappointed” when Hillary Clinton lost the election in November 2016 to Mr. Trump.

She said she and Mr. Obama nevertheless prepared for a smooth transition of power to Mr. Trump. Mrs. Obama said “none of this was easy for me,” saying that “Donald Trump had spread racist lies about my husband that had put my family in danger.”



Before he was elected, Mr. Trump had been a leader of the so-called “birther” movement that claimed incorrectly that Mr. Obama wasn’t born in the U.S.

“That wasn’t something I was ready to forgive,” Mrs. Obama said. “But I knew that, for the sake of our country, I had to find the strength and maturity to put my anger aside. So I welcomed Melania Trump into the White House and talked with her about my experience, answering every question she had — from the heightened scrutiny that comes with being first lady to what it’s like to raise kids in the White House.”

She said, “I knew in my heart it was the right thing to do — because our democracy is so much bigger than anybody’s ego. Our love of country requires us to respect the results of an election even when we don’t like them or wish it had gone differently.”

“The American people had spoken,” she said of Mr. Trump’s win in 2016. “And one of the great responsibilities of the presidency is to listen when they do. So my husband and I instructed our staffs to do what [former President] George and Laura Bush had done for us: run a respectful, seamless transition of power — one of the hallmarks of American democracy. We invited the folks from the president-elect’s team into our offices and prepared detailed memos for them, offering what we’d learned over the past eight years.”

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