Monday, January 30, 2012

Michelle Obama Launches Twitter Campaign To Get Jay Leno To Eat His Veggies

Tonight Show host doesn't like the First Lady's favorite food group: "We'll see about that!" Mrs. Obama tweets...
UPDATE: The First Lady gets Leno to eat his veggies
"I don't think I've had a vegetable since 1969," comic Jay Leno told Parade magazine in 2006.

"My mother gave up on trying to make me eat them."

Six years later, First Lady Michelle Obama is stepping in as Mom in Chief: She's launched a Twitter campaign to get Leno to eat some vegetables onscreen when she joins him on Tuesday, Jan. 31 in his Burbank studio to film The Tonight Show. (At top: Mrs. Obama with Leno during a 2008 appearance)

".@JayLeno says he never eats vegetables…we'll see about that! #LetsMove to get Jay to eat some veggies on #TheTonightShow on 1/31! -mo," the First Lady tweeted on the Let's Move! account.

Mrs. Obama will promote the upcoming second anniversary of her campaign when she visits Leno, ahead of a three-day tour which kicks off on Feb. 9 with a visit to Des Moines, Iowa. Leno has not yet responded to Mrs. Obama's tweet, but he's been vocal about his love of unhealthy food, and jokes about it on his show. He's never actually eaten a salad, he said. (Update: Leno retweeted Mrs. Obama late today)

"I eat a lot of junk food like pizza hamburgers and hot dogs. When I have a soda, I have a soda — not a diet soda," he told Parade.

Leno has also joked about Let's Move!. Last October, he aired a doctored video clip of Mrs. Obama punching out NBC's Al Roker during an interview when they were discussing her efforts to get kids physically fit.

Mrs. Obama's veggie challenge to Leno is her first personal tweet on the @LetsMove account--distinguished from staffers' tweets by the "mo" signature--though the account debuted in February of 2011. The First Lady's own @MichelleObama account launched on Jan. 12 this year. She will be taking questions from followers of that account this week, according to a tweet from a staffer. (Above: Mrs. Obama's Leno tweet)

The visit to The Tonight Show is her first appearance as First Lady, though Mrs. Obama appeared via satellite from the White House in March of 2010 to do Leno's segment 10 @ Ten, responding to questions about President Obama's habits. Mrs. Obama also joined Leno for a studio visit in October of 2008, weeks before Mr. Obama's election victory. NBC says Tuesday's outing is the first appearance from a First Lady on a late-night TV chat show.

The President last appeared on The Tonight Show in October of 2011, and after joking to Leno that the White House was in danger of getting egged on Halloween thanks to his wife's insistence on including dried fruit in treat bags handed out to costumed school kids, more candy was actually added to the treat bags. (Above: The President and Leno backstage during the visit)

More TV, and a Let's Move! event in Los Angeles...
Mrs. Obama will be in Los Angeles from Jan. 31-Feb. 1, and she will also tape The Ellen DeGeneres Show to promote Let's Move!; that interview will air on Thursday, Feb. 2. Mrs. Obama has one Let's Move! event scheduled during her LA trip. On Wednesday morning, she will attend an event with Inglewood Mayor James T. Butts and Robert Ross, CEO of The California Endowment, to highlight efforts to eliminate food deserts. She will also speak at a DNC fundraising reception on Tuesday night, and at a fundraising lunch on Wednesday.

Mrs. Obama knocks out Al Roker in this Leno clip:

Related: There has been one White House Tweetup for the Let's Move! campaign, held in October of 2011, as Mrs. Obama hosted the Fall Harvest of her Kitchen Garden. Check the sidebar of the blog for White House vegetable recipes.

*Top photo courtesy of Warner Bros./Michael Rozman/AP; the President with Leno by Pete Souza/White House; video from The Tonight Show