First Lady Michelle Obama made her way down Pennsylvania Avenue earlier today to speak with employees at the Justice Department. Attorney General Eric Holder introduced Mrs. Obama and noted her history of legal work:
…She decided long ago – long before she became First Lady – that she wanted to harness the power of the law to generate positive social change and build a more just society.
Mrs. Obama’s remarks echoed that theme. She spoke about the reasons she wanted to become a lawyer and the importance of the work done by the thousands of employees at the Justice Department on behalf of the American people.
And here at DOJ, you all represent the ideals that drew us all to this business in the first place: those principles of equality, fairness and the rule of law. Your responsibility is not to a particular party — and that’s important for people to understand — or to a particular administration or to a President. You work for the American people. You do battle every day on behalf of the most vulnerable among us. And you touch the lives of virtually every American in ways large and small -– even if they don’t realize it.
For a department that started out with a single, part-time employee in 1789, the workload here at DOJ has really never stopped growing. And I know you all are feeling that right now.
Whether it’s keeping our nation safe from terrorist attacks, or bringing our most hardened criminals to justice, protecting consumers or safeguarding our civil rights, your work has never been more important that it is today.
- First Lady Michelle Obama personally greeted many of the hundreds of department employees who had gathered in The Great Hall. During her remarks she praised their service, saying, “I think it’s important for the people around the country to know that government is working hard for the American people and that it’s made up of everyday Americans who are making sacrifices on their behalf.”
For more from the First Lady’s speech to Justice employees, read the full remarks at WhiteHouse.gov.