News & Politics

Barack and Michelle Obama Get Oscar Nomination for Being The Obamas

(AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Barack Obama had something to celebrate today because the Netflix documentary he and wife Michelle produced, “American Factory,” was predictably nominated for an Oscar for best documentary.

“Glad to see American Factory’s Oscar nod for Best Documentary,” Obama tweeted. “It’s the kind of story we don’t see often enough and it’s exactly what Michelle and I hope to achieve with Higher Ground.”

Higher Ground is the name of the Obamas’ production company. Last year they were accused of “deplorable behavior” over a trademark dispute over the name of the company.

“Congrats to the incredible filmmakers and entire team!” Obama added.

“American Factory,” which debuted on Netflix in August, was the Obamas’ first project under Higher Ground Productions and follows the story of a closed GM plant that is bought and re-opened by a Chinese billionaire. It has a 75% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes and a 97% critics’ score.

I admit I’ve never watched the documentary that the Obamas’ allegedly produced, but it’s a bit hard to believe that this documentary would have earned this nomination had they not been linked to the project.

Let’s look at the evidence.

Barack Obama has already won two Grammy awards for Best Spoken Word Album, and Michelle Obama was recently nominated in the same category for her memoir, Becoming—and I’ll bet a thousand dollars she’ll win. In fact, if you look at the nominations and winners in that category, you’ll find a lot of Democrat politicians and pundits have a knack for scoring nominations and winning the Grammy in that category, while their conservative counterparts don’t even get nominated. Nominees for Best Spoken Word Album include Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Jimmy Carter, Al Franken, and Jesse Jackson.

All of them won at least once.

Back to the Obamas. Barack Obama was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize within a month or so of taking office and ultimately won the award over several more appropriate choices. His victory was so ill-considered that the Secretary of the Nobel Peace Prize Committee, Geir Lundestad, regrets Obama being given the award.

The bottom line is, like many Democrats, the Obamas have a history of winning awards on their names and politics rather than for objective merit. Having their names attached to this documentary certainly gave it an advantage over the countless documentaries produced last year.

Sometimes I think it was actually one of the Obamas who taped the banana onto the wall last month that sold for $120,000.

If they ever put out a country album I’d be really afraid.


Matt Margolis is the author of Trumping Obama: How President Trump Saved Us From Barack Obama’s Legacy and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis