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Article: Jodi Kantor, The New York Times, The Caucus


January 20, 2010 by Jodi Kantor, The New York Times: The Caucus blog

On Wednesday, Michelle Obama asked the nation’s mayors to enlist in what she hopes will be her foremost project: an ambitious, wide-ranging effort to reduce childhood obesity. Mrs. Obama has often spoken about the issue since arriving in office last year, creating a White House garden, posing with a basket of vegetable faces on Sesame Street and even hula-hooping on the South Lawn.

Next month, aides say, Mrs. Obama will kick off a more substantive stage to her efforts, leading a coordinated campaign among federal agencies, business and nonprofit organizations. “It’s about whether we’re willing to use both our policies and our bully pulpits,” she said in a 20-minute speech to the U.S. Conference of Mayors.