(J. Russell George, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, is known today as the man who helped unearth the Internal Revenue Service’s targeting of conservative groups.
But to one Virginia congressman, George is also notable for having once “dated” First Lady Michelle Obama.
“[G]eorge has operated in these halls of power his entire career. He worked for Dole, and then in President George H.W. Bush’s White House,” writes Shane Goldmacher for National Journal.
“In between, he attended Harvard Law School, graduating in 1988 alongside a young Michelle Obama (then Michelle Robinson),” he adds.
They weren’t in the same section – the academic groupings that Harvard uses to divide its students – but as two young black law students, George said they traveled in some of the same social circles, including the Black Law Students Association (BLSA).
“I think he actually dated Michelle at one point,” said former Rep. Tom Davis, a Virginia Republican, who worked with George when he was staff director for a House oversight subcommittee in the late 1990s and early 2000s.
“That is overstating it,” said George. But they did socialize in group settings. “Michelle was a lovely person and down to earth,” he said. “…The BLSA went out for pizza we would go out together.”
He paused, for a beat. “Don’t get me in trouble,” George added.
Of course, this whole thing is a matter of perspective and it all depends on how you define “dating.” Even George says the claim in an overstatement.
Still, if George and the First Lady actually “went out” as the IG claims they did, and if he means “go out together” in the sense you and I usually think of, what a strange, little world we live in.