Ellen Sturtz: Michelle Obama Heckled At Fundraiser, Threatens to Leave

Two weeks after President Obama was heckled by an anti-war protester during a national security speech, Michelle Obama was the targeted by an LGBT activist at a DNC fundraiser, and was not quite as patient in her response. In a rare face-to-face encounter for the First Lady, Michelle confronted the activist, Ellen Sturtz, and told the audience that either she or Sturtz had to leave.

During Obama’s fundraising speech in Northwest Washington, Strutz, a lesbian activist, interrupted her remarks and called for President Obama to sign an anti-discrimination executive order. The First Lady replied, “One of the things I don’t do well is this,” and left the podium to confront the protester. “Listen to me or you can take the mic, but I’m leaving. You all decide. You have one choice.” Sturtz later commented that, “She came right down in my face. I was taken aback.”

Sturtz responded by saying she would gladly take the mic but the crowd had different plans, with nearby attendees telling Sturtz “you need to go.” She was escorted out shouting, “…lesbian looking for federal equality before I die.”

Returning to script, FLOTUS continued: “So let me make the point that I was making before. We are here for our kids. So we must recapture that passion. That same urgency and energy that we felt back in 2008, 2012. Understand this — this is what I want you all to understand. This is not about us. No one back here. It’s not about you or you or your issue or your thing. This is about our children.” 

Startz, a member of the gay rights group GetEqual, was referring to a proposed executive order that would prohibit federal contractors from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or identity. 

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Maxime Fischer-Zernin

Studying Political Science at Duke University (T. '15). His interests lie primarily in American national security and foreign policy. He is currently an Editor-at-Large for the Duke Political Review, and is a contributor for PolicyMic.com.

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