Michelle Obama: I'll Campaign When Called On - But 2012 is "a Long Time Away"

Michelle Obama on ABC's "Good Morning America" ABC

Michelle Obama is ready to hit the campaign trail when called upon, she says - but she has plenty of work to do in the meantime.

"I mean, there's so much more to do here in the present," Obama said in an interview with ABC's "Good Morning America" that aired on Friday. "I focus on what's before me, right on the work that I can do today.

"Whenever it's time to campaign and they tap me on the shoulder, I'll be right there," the first lady continued. "But until then, we've got some great initiatives," she said. "And I'm rolling up my sleeves to get that work done, and we'll cross that other bridge when we get there."

"It's a long time away," she added, of the 2012 campaign.

Obama, who was speaking from the Fort Jackson training post in South Carolina, was promoting among military service members her "Let's Move!" campaign, which aims to reduce obesity among Americans.

"It is not an overstatement to say that childhood obesity and our need for physical education and nutrition education is a national security issue," Obama told ABC's Robin Roberts. "If we can make our society healthier, if we can make this next generation of kids healthier, we can teach them how to eat, if we can get them moving just a little bit...If we can get the military to use its resources to change the way it feeds our troops, then we'll see progress," she said.

When asked what her response was to those who thought "Let's Move!" was too intrusive into the lives - and personal habits - of Americans, Obama emphasized that the program's main goal was nutritional education.

The first lady said the program "has never been about the government telling people what to do."

"But what it is about is giving parents information -- and clear information -- so that they can make good choices," she added.

Obama also spoke about the recent tragedies in Tucson, Arizona, in which six people were killed when 22-year-old Jared Loughner allegedly opened fire outside of an event held by Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords at a local supermarket. One of the 14 people injured was Giffords, who is currently in the recovery process from a gunshot wound to the head.

Obama said the death of nine-year-old Christina Taylor-Green, who was shot and killed at the event, was a demonstration of "just how fragile life is, and just how important it is for you to ... hold the ones you love just a little bit tighter, and value the things that are good in others. Not to take those things for granted. That's what times like these teach us."

"Even in our deepest pain, our most horrific moments, we come together, because that community stepped up and supported Gabby Giffords and all the other families ... they were there for them," Obama continued. "And the spirit of that is something that we, you know, we need to embrace and be reminded that that's who we are as a nation."

"That gives me the energy to do the next hard thing, because I know who I'm working for," said the first lady. "I'm working for my country, you know?"

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