Barack + Michelle Obama: The Story Behind the Most-Liked Photo of All Time

After the election, this image of Barack and Michelle Obama became the most liked post in both Twitter's and Facebook's histories. Here's the scoop behind it!
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Barack + Michelle Obama: The Story Behind the Most-Liked Photo of All Time

After the election, this image of Barack and Michelle Obama became the most liked post in both Twitter’s and Facebook’s histories. Here’s the scoop behind it!

-Lylah M. Alphonse, Yahoo! Shine

Barack and Michelle Obama

It was an intimate snapshot of a sweet celebration: Minutes after the networks called the 2012 presidential election for Barack Obama last Tuesday night, the Obama for America campaign posted a picture of him hugging his wife along with a simple message: “Four more years.” Within minutes, it became the most popular post in the history of Twitter and the most-liked image in the history of Facebook, shared more than 804,000 times, marked as a favorite by more than 289,500 Twitter users, and “liked” by more than 3.2 million Facebook friends.

The simple shot of a happy husband and wife was a surprise to people who may have been expecting a grand portrait of a newly re-elected president and his people. But no one was more surprised than the woman who took the photo back in August.

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Scout Tufankjian, a photojournalist who has been focusing her lens on Obama’s political career since 2007, told Slate’s Julia Turner that she snapped the picture on the third day of an Iowa bus tour.

“It was the first day that the first lady had joined us so he hadn’t seen her in a couple of days,” she explained. “She came in on a bus that morning—it was the first event of the day—and they embraced on stage. Onstage in front of all those people.”

“I decided to focus on them rather than taking a wider shot, because I think I’m not alone in finding their relationship to be totally aspirational,” the newly married photojournalist said. “The obvious love and respect that they have for each other, and that the relationship is clearly one of equals, despite the fact that he’s the president, is remarkable. So I wanted to focus on them as a couple rather than on them and the crowd, or them and their position.”


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