Michelle Obama says Republicans are “literally gray and white,” and Americans should “mix it up” and elect more blacks, gays and women to Congress.
Mrs. Obama made the statements during a guest appearance at the Pennsylvania Conference for Women on Tuesday.
The former first lady recalled attending the State of the Union address, where she noticed the Republican side was “all men, all white”.
She argued that the lack of diversity in the Republican Party is why black people continue to “struggle” and “don’t trust politics.”
Comparing the GOP Party to Democrats, Obama said, “Physically, there’s a difference in color, in the tone, because on one side all men, all white, on the other side some women, some people of color.”
She added: “I look at that, and I go, no wonder. No wonder we struggle, no wonder people don’t trust politics. We’re not even noticing what these rooms look like.”
Obama suggested Americans should elect more black, openly gay and female lawmakers.
“We should be working actively to mix it up, so we’re getting a real broad range of perspectives on every issue,” she said.
“If people haven’t had the experience of being other and out, and you are trying to fix the problem of those folks, it’s hard to come up with the right answer when you haven’t lived it.”
Mrs. Obama has remained in the public eye after her husband, former President Barack Obama, left office in January.
She has said she will not run for president in 2020.