Former US first lady Michelle Obama has told Americans to vote for her husband’s ex-vice president “like your lives depend on it.”

The wife of President Donald Trump’s predecessor Barack Obama urged voters to elect his old vice-president Joe Biden on November 3, insisting “We don’t have the luxury to assume that things are going to turn out OK.”

“We can no longer pretend that we don’t know exactly who and what this president stands for” Obama said in a video released by Biden’s presidential campaign. “Search your hearts, and your conscience, and then vote for Joe Biden like your lives depend on it.”

Obama also attacked Trump over his allegedly carefree attitude to the COVID-19 pandemic and setting a bad example to other citizens.

“Seven months later, he still won’t wear a mask consistently and encourage others to do the same, even when those simple actions could save countless lives,” she said. “Instead, he continues to gaslight the American people by acting like this pandemic is not a real threat.”