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Transcript of Michelle Obama’s speech as prepared for delivery:
As you might imagine, for Barack, running for president is nothing compared to that first game of basketball with my brother, Craig. I can’t tell you how much it means to have Craig and my mom here tonight. Like Craig, I can feel my dad looking down on us, just as I’ve felt his presence in every grace- filled moment of my life.
At six-foot-six, I’ve often felt like Craig was looking down on me too, literally. But the truth is, both when we were kids and today, he wasn’t looking down on me. He was watching over me. And he’s been there for me every step of the way since that clear February day, 19 months ago when, with little more than our faith in each other and a hunger for change, we joined my husband, Barack Obama, on the improbable journey that’s brought us to this moment.
But each of us also comes here tonight by way of our own improbable journey. I come here tonight as a sister blessed with a brother who is my mentor, my protector and my lifelong friend. I come here as a wife who loves my husband and believes he will be an extraordinary president. I come here as a mom whose girls are the heart of my heart and the center of my world. They’re the first thing I think about when I wake up in the morning and the last thing I think about when I go to bed at night. Their future and all our children’s future is my stake in this election.
And I come here as a daughter raised on the south side of Chicago by a father who was a blue-collar city worker and a mother who stayed at home with my brother and me. My mother’s love has always been a sustaining force for our family and one of my greatest joys is seeing her integrity, her compassion and her intelligence reflected in my own daughters.
My dad was our rock. Although he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in his early thirties, he was our provider, our champion, our hero. As he got sicker, it got harder for him to walk. It took him longer to get dressed in the morning. But if he was in pain, he never let on. He never stopped smiling and laughing, even while struggling to button his shirt, even while using two canes to get himself across the room to give my mom a kiss. He just woke up a little earlier and worked a little harder.
He and my mom poured everything they had into me and Craig. It was the greatest gift a child can receive: never doubting for a single minute that you’re loved and cherished and have a place in this world. And thanks to