REPORT: Michelle Obama set to lend “star power” to Biden

According to a new report from the Hill, ex-first lady Michelle Obama is set to endorse Joe Biden and because of her “star power” a rollout is being planned.

Michelle Obama is still listed in the prediction markets as a possible running mate for Biden, though she has repeatedly strongly denied any interest.

Biden has said he would ask her if he felt she would say “yes.”

TheHill reports former Vice President Joe Biden’s campaign is planning a rollout for Michelle Obama’s endorsement, although there are questions around just how public a role the enormously popular former first lady will play in his campaign.

Sources tell The Hill that the Biden campaign’s early plans include a focus on remote fundraising and voter registration efforts.

The trick for Michelle Obama and the Biden campaign is finding the right balance for the pop culture icon, who could be a massive asset for the campaign but has never shown much enthusiasm for campaign politics.

“This week was President Obama’s moment to enter the campaign. Of course Mrs. Obama supports Joe Biden and we will keep you posted on her plans,” an Obama aide said.

The timing of the rollout is uncertain.

“We know what pretty much everyone in America does: Michelle Obama is probably the most beloved member of the Democratic party and her support is a big deal,” a Biden aide said. “Any future announcement would reflect the incredible impact her voice has.”

Howard Gutman, a former Obama administration ambassador, said that “the Biden campaign will take anything they can get” from the former first lady.

“The question is, as a family matter, what kind of profile does she and her husband and her daughters want her to have?” he said. “It’s a question of how much they want her to be out there in the crossfire.”

Sources tell The Hill that Obama is expected to lend her name to an email fundraiser, potentially as early as next week. She may also lend her image to a direct mail campaign, while continuing the voter registration efforts she has spearheaded as the founder of a nonpartisan nonprofit group.

In addition, there are talks about the former first lady potentially filming a short online video in support of Biden that has a lighter tone than the one former President Obama filmed for his endorsement earlier this week.

The campaign would also like Michelle Obama to pop in from time to time on virtual fundraisers, and Democrats expect she will work the phones behind the scenes, encouraging her celebrity friends and fundraisers who may have backed other candidates in the primary to rally behind Biden.

The sources say the details and timing are still being ironed out.