Americans like Michelle Obama even more than they like her husband, a new Gallup poll shows. Nearly three-quarters view her favorably, compared to 69% for the president. And while Barack's ratings have fluctuated, the first lady's keep rising. "Her transformation in the public eye is one of David Axelrod's greatest successes," writes Ben Smith of Politico.
"She was, for a moment, a serious vulnerability for the Obama campaign," Smith recalls. Her tamer, more traditional first lady role is winning fans, but it's hiding the woman so many loved, he contends: "The question is whether the traits that made her staff and the women of Iowa so fond of her—biting humor, irreverence, normalcy—can find their way more fully into her public profile."