Q: That's right. So if your kids are turning to you, whom do you lean on?
JB: I lost my mother two years ago, during the campaign, but I have four sisters, and I lean on them. I have great friends. I have Joe's sister, whom I'm very close to. And Joe really is my person to turn to. And our staffs — they're friends, really. It's women supporting women — a really important thing.
MO: Well, it's something that we need to work on — renewing the respect and value of public service. I think the cynicism that we naturally fall into about government affects whether a woman decides to make the level of sacrifice it takes to do this. I mean, Joe has sacrificed throughout his career and has needed a good, solid partner by his side. If a woman is in that role, she needs that same solid partner. So you've got people who have to weigh all that.
JB: And we need so much more diversity — racially, culturally. We need women to better reflect the social fabric of our society.
Q: Would either of you ever —
MO: The answer is N-O. Period, dot.
JB: No. [Laughter.] We're emphatic.
Q: That was pretty definite. And that's because?
JB: There was never a desire. I never wanted to run.
MO: I think one reason Jill and I are comfortable and happy is that we're doing what speaks to us. And what I've learned as a woman growing up, getting older, is you've got to know who you are. And a politician — it's never been who I was or wanted to be.
JB: I never took a political science course. [Laughs.]
Q: What have you learned from each other?
JB: Michelle is such a really great friend and a strong woman. I loved it when I opened the paper yesterday and saw her out there dancing with the kids for a Let's Move! thing. She has such positive energy, and she is making such a difference.
Q: You have a few years on Mrs. Obama. Have you given her any advice about living life after 50?
JB: Oh, please! [Laughs.]
MO: Let me tell you something. Jill gives whatever aging means this level of grace and excitement. She's smart, she's gorgeous, she's accomplished. She has a strong marriage. And the bonds she has built with all of her children are real. She has created a real family in the midst of Washington, D.C. She's managed to maintain that balance and still be down-to-earth.
Q: That's what AARP is all about.
MO: That's what I'm saying! Jill and I have an age difference, but [looking at] what she is doing at her age, I feel like I still have so much more to do. And that's the beauty of it — mature women are showing us that it gets even more fabulous if you've got it together and maintain your health, which Jill does. She is a runner. She is eating right. She is active and engaged. If I'm where Jill is at her age, I'm a happy camper.