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First Lady Promotes Vets, Jokes About Campaign on "Colbert Report"

Leon Neal/WPA POOL/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- With the general election fight now well underway, first lady Michelle Obama jokingly offered her official endorsement Wednesday night in a stop by Comedy Central’s The Colbert Report.

“You are popular,” host Stephen Colbert noted to cheers from the audience.  “Do you lord over the president the fact that you’re more popular than he is?  Do you ever say, like, ‘Hey, watch it or I might not campaign for you.’”

“I might try that when I get home,” Mrs. Obama quipped.

Asked if she was prepared to endorse his candidacy, the first lady eagerly offered her husband her full support.

“I am endorsing my husband Barack Obama.  I think he will be a phenomenal president -- he has been a phenomenal president,” she said.

“He’s my man,” she added with a wry smile.

The first lady’s appearance on Colbert, her first since the 2008 campaign, was intended to promote the one-year anniversary of her “Joining Forces” initiative, which honors and supports U.S. troops and their families.

“People have really been stepping up in some amazing ways,” she said.  “We’ve seen people hiring our veterans and finding wonderful flexible opportunities for spouses, because employment is a key issue for these families.”

While unemployment for returning veterans is above the national average, Mrs. Obama said “we’re seeing it decrease at some pretty significant rates.”

“But until we get to zero, we still have a lot of work to do,” she said.  “These people are bringing in skills that actually improve the bottom line of companies because these are some of the most highly trained, highly skilled, disciplined people that we have in our society, the best this country has to offer.  So we all need to do our part.”

Colbert joked that hiring a veteran is also a good idea because “with the stories he tells of his previous jobs, it will really make the interoffice complaining sound trivial.”

The first lady agreed: “It’s hard to be a whiner around a veteran.”

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Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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