First lady Michelle Obama has an unusual fund-raising message for big-dollar Democratic donors: “I hate doing this.”

To Senate Democratic donors in New York City this week, she said, “There's nothing more uncomfortable than asking people for stuff. I hate doing this. I love you all, but I hate asking you guys for stuff.”

Then the experienced fundraiser added, “I've gotten pretty good at it.”

Promoting several female candidates, including Alison Lundergan Grimes, the Kentucky Democrat running against Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Obama suggested that women have difficulty raising funds.

“We as women, we feel a little awkward asking for stuff. We feel a little embarrassed to ask people for money,” she said, adding, “I know that some of you might occasionally feel a little bit annoyed that we’re always hitting you up for some money ... but that’s okay. It's okay, you can admit it, it's annoying.”

But not annoying enough to stop raising money for embattled Democrats, she added. “Make no mistake about it, the midterm elections matter. They matter. And if you want to bring some change to Congress, then we can't just sit around feeling angry or helpless or hopeless. Because there’s something that we and all of you can do right now, today, to make a huge difference, and it's simple: You can write a big old fat check. That’s what we need you to do right now. Write a big check, big huge one. Write the biggest check you can possibly write. Take your frustration, your passion, your hope and turn that into real, meaningful support for leaders who will truly represent the people they serve.”

Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at