Michelle Obama: No tension with husband's aides

Gayle King and first lady Michelle Obama
In a "CBS This Morning" interview, Michelle Obama tells co-host Gayle King about her role as a confidante of the president.
CBS News

Michelle Obama said depictions of friction in a new book, "The Obamas," between her and former top aides to her husband, President Obama, aren't true.

In a wide-ranging interview with "CBS This Morning" co-host Gayle King, the first lady also said that some have tried to portray her as an "angry black woman" since Mr. Obama first announced he was seeking the presidency.

More from the interview: Michelle Obama on how she's changed

" ... I guess it's more interesting to imagine this conflicted situation here and a strong woman and-- you know? But that's been an image that people have tried to paint of me since the day Barack announced, that I'm some angry black woman."

"The Obamas," written by New York Times reporter Jodi Kantor, reports that there was tension with former White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel and with former presidential Press Secretary Robert Gibbs.

But Mrs. Obama told King that simply wasn't so.

"Rahm is -- and Amy, his wife, are some of our dearest friends," Mrs. Obama says. "Rahm and I have never had a cross word. He's a funny guy."

The book also reports that Gibbs cursed Mrs. Obama during a meeting dealing with the fallout from a book written by her French counterpart, Carla Bruni Sarkozy, which claimed that Mrs. Obama said living in the White House "was hell."

Mrs. Obama says she hadn't heard that at the time, and that Gibbs "is a trusted advisor. He's been a good friend and remains so."

She added that she hasn't read Kantor's book.

"...who can write about how I feel? Who? What third person can tell me how I feel, or anybody for that matter," she told King.

The first lady admits she's one of her husband's "biggest confidantes, but he has dozens of really smart people who surround him. ... That's not to say that we don't have discussions and conversations. That's not to say that my husband doesn't know how I feel."

"You know, I just try to be me. And my hope is that over time people get to know me. And they get to judge me for me."

As for living in the White House, Mrs. Obama told King, "It has been a privilege, from day one. Now, there are challenges with being a mother and trying to keep your kids sane. And I worry a lot about that. I mean, if there's any anxiety that I feel, it's because I want to make sure that my girls come out of this on the other end whole. But me, Barack, we're grown-ups. You know, all the ups and downs, we take it on."