Nel's New Day

October 4, 2011

Disappearing Bachmann

Filed under: Uncategorized — trp2011 @ 6:06 PM

The Republican presidential candidate collection stays dysfunctional as always with fair-haired non-candidate Chris Christie saying that he won’t run until he  he might run and then won’t run. With the first primary in Iowa three months away, Herman Cain is leaving the campaign trail for one-third of that time, and Rick Perry is suffering from not only foot-in-mouth problems but also racial issues. (Jon Stewart’s take on this is hilarious and, as usual, right on target.) Thaddeus McCotter quietly slipped out of his campaign on September 22.

Now Michele Bachmann has lost her pollster and senior adviser, and two other of her staff members have transferred back to her congressional office. Once the favored candidate by the Tea Party, her national polling among those who lean Republican is just 4 percent. Mitt Romney is in the lead with 21 percent while Cain and Perry are tied at 14 percent. Another poll gives slightly higher numbers for the four, but only Jon Huntsman and Rick Santorum are below Bachmann. Her former campaign manager, Ed Rollins, said that she doesn’t have the resources to campaign beyond the Iowa caucuses.

Until Perry’s entry, the media provided an onslaught of information about Bachmann, but the reporting on her mistakes only seemed to endear her to her public. No longer. Her claim that the vaccine for HPV that could prevent cervical cancer would cause “mental retardation” seems to be her downfall. Her indifference to the many teen suicides in her Congressional district also became a problem when she declared that bullying is “not a federal issue.

Caleb Laiseki, a 16-year-old national advocate for LGBT youth, disagreed. “A national issue is when an issue is occurring throughout the entire nation,” Laiseki said. “Therefore, when incidents of suicides and bullying are occurring in all fifty-states, it clarifies that this a national issue that needs prompt solutions.” (Out of the mouths of babes.) Pending legislation before Congress include the Student Non-Discrimination Act and the Safe Schools Improvement Act both of which aim to stop the bullying of LGBT students in schools, and President Obama held a bullying summit last summer.

The question of how Bachmann perceives the definition of “submissive” also created problems after the August debate. The audience booed Byron York after he asked, “As president, would you be submissive to your husband?” Bachmann covered by claiming that the word means “respect,” but York had described her feeling about getting a law degree being something she “hated,” but she did it only because her husband told her to do it. Having Marcus Bachmann calling the shots as the commander-in-chief is a very scary thing.

Bachmann’s indifference to the pain of vulnerable people in this nation goes far beyond her false claims that she can bring the price of gasoline down to $2, that eliminating corporate taxes (what corporate taxes?!) will help the nation, and that she saved the country from losing all its incandescent lightbulbs. (There was never a risk of that.)  Her claim that she has “a post-doctorate degree in federal tax law from William and Mary” is also just plain wrong.

Her calls for austerity in government while bemoaning the waste of earmarks and stimulus plans are belied by her own actions. At least 16 times, she petitioned the federal government for financial help or aid,  several of these requests from stimulus funds which she had labeled “fantasy economics.” Two more requests went to the Environmental Protection Agency; Bachmann had promised to lock the EPA’s doors and shut off its lights if she were in the White House. Both she, as a farmer who accepts subsidies, and her husband, as a medical person who takes Medicaid, personally accept money from the government that she considers wasteful.

Unlike Sarah Palin, Bachmann can cite specific reading that influences her. After working as a research assistant with fundamentalist law professor John Eidsmoe on his 1987 book Christianity and the Constitution, she continues to tell audiences that he has a major influence on her thinking. As recently as 2005, Eidsmoe spoke at the Council of Conservative Citizens, the same white supremacist group that helped cost Trent Lott his Majority Leader post, and he’s passionately talked up confederate states’ “right to secede.”

In her attempt to push through her personal agenda, Bachmann doesn’t hesitate to pull out all the stops—for example describing her own miscarriage in her attempts to criminalize others’ miscarriages. She also dropped her ten-year membership in an ultra-conservative church just weeks before she declared her campaign for Republican president.

Bachmann plans to run again for her seat in the U.S. House if she fails to be the selected Republican presidential candidate, but her constituents may have become disenchanted with her. She has failed to vote in Congress since August 1 and voted only 54 percent of the time since announcing her presidential candidacy on June 13, missing 150 votes since that time. Tim Pawlenty said that “her record of accomplishment in Congress is non-existent.” She claimed the lightbulb bill as her greatest accomplishment. Minnesota newspapers are reporting that she may not be a viable candidate in 2012—even in Minnesota.

1 Comment »

  1. What will the comedians do without her?


    Comment by Lee Lynch — October 4, 2011 @ 9:33 PM | Reply

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