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Michelle Obama and Ellen DeGeneres surprise CVS shoppers and crack open a box of wine

The first lady is stumping for Hillary Clinton in Virginia on Friday

Rachael Revesz
Friday 16 September 2016 16:28 BST
Ellen DeGeneres and Michelle Obama go shopping together

Michelle Obama may have had an extremely busy eight years at the White House, forming relationships with world leaders and travelling around the world to promote her charity Let Girls Learn, but the first lady still managed to set aside a leisurely half hour shopping in CVS with Ellen DeGeneres.

“You push the cart as no one will push it for you,” said DeGeneres as they entered the store.

The television host made the president’s wife laugh loudly as they wandered around the store together, figuring out how to operate the coin machine and how to pour wine from a box.

“Michelle, what kind of cream do you need for that rash that you were telling me about?” she shouted in front of other shoppers.

The not-so-usual shopping trip came just a few days before the first lady was set to stump for Hillary Clinton in Virginia, joining the likes of president Obama, former presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren and Clinton’s running mate, Tim Kaine, two months before the election.

In CVS, the pair approached the checkout and a store clerk came forward to help out, saying something quietly.

“No we can’t take bribes, I work for the government,” protested Obama.

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DeGeneres refused to help at the checkout, joking that the Obamas would soon not have people to do things for them.

She asked if she could get her face on a dollar bill, chewing on a snack bar.

“You would to have done something grand, like Harriet Tubman. You should have freed some slaves,” Obama replied, feeding her own cash into the automatic check-out.

Obama has not shied away from using humour as a weapon.

Rather than hide away, one of the most watched women in the world has embraced the attention, dancing on television, showing people how she works out and speaking openly on her family life inside the White House.

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One of the most visible first ladies in modern US history, Obama has managed to become a vitally important person in the current administration, giving powerful speeches on the campaign trail, using social media and opening up in an often frank way during interviews.

“I wake up every day in a house that was built by slaves,” she told a stunned audience at the Democratic National Convention in July, illustrating that she could use her position at the White House to make a powerful statement.

In the sketch at CVS, Obama’s security service lingered amid the shopping aisles.

The first lady has said she is looking forward to sitting in a garden that is not a National Park, to opening a window without alerting the Secret Service and to driving a car without bullet proof glass.

But in the remaining four months in Washington DC, Ms Obama has not wasted a minute of the spotlight.

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