Michelle Obama opens up to ELLE readers about the future of American women and the five waysPresident Obama is looking out for women like you.

Dear Readers,

When I fell in love with Barack more than 20 years ago, I knew he’d be a loving husband and a devoted father. I knew he shared my determination to make a difference in other people’s lives. But I never dreamed that he’d one day be president, and I know that he didn’t either.

But four years ago—against all odds—I joined millions of Americans from all backgrounds and walks of life to vote for Barack. I didn’t do it just because we were married. I voted for him because I knew he was going to stand up for women like me—and our daughters, sisters, and mothers. When I look at all he’s done since that freezing day he was inaugurated on the Capitol steps—from health-care reform, to saving jobs, to fighting for women’s rights—I’m proud of how far we have come. And I’m determined to help him keep moving forward.

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