Welcome, members of the media!

March 24, 2011

On the extreme off chance that reporters are visiting this site now that Bachmann has officially declared her candidacy for president, we made a page just for them.

As for the candidacy itself, let us extract our true feelings from an email written to a friend earlier:

So she says. I do not understand why she thinks she has a chance (if
she does). She doesn’t even win by a landslide in her own district and
her appeal is very limited outside the 20-25% of Americans who are
evangelical Christians, and probably even not all of those since
evangelicals include non-crazy people. In addition, members of the House
haven’t even been nominated for the presidency in ages, in part
because they haven’t generally been heard of outside their areas. Her
appeal to Minnesotans will be further diluted by the presence of the
much more electable, though boring, Tim Pawlenty. Her appeal to
tea-party whackjobs will be diluted by the four or so other people
trying to do that, although I doubt Sarah Palin is actually running
(not lucrative enough) and Newt Gingrich is currently playing target
practice with his own foot.

OTOH, this could still be a cynical play for massive wads of cash so
she can run for the Minnesota senatorial seat currently held by Amy
Klobuchar. That would be less good for democracy but more achievable
for Bachmann. I am split between this viewpoint and thinking that
Bachmann is just fantastically egotistical and really thinks she has a
chance. The egotistical viewpoint would also explain why she did her
own response to the SOTU speech even though nobody, including her own
party, wanted her to.

Another explanation: She wants to create a real political party out of
the Tea Party. This theory also relies on her having a massive ego,
since the main beneficiaries of a split in the GOP would be Democrats.

So that’s where we stand on that.


Other Republicans give Bachmann’s “hidden health care money” claim a cold shoulder

March 20, 2011

Or so we read. The Strib’s Hot Dish Politics blog says Boehner has avoided the issue entirely and some other Republican from Texas told the media he was actively mystified by her claim.

The blog also points out that Bachmann was only one of 54 Republicans who voted against funding the government for another three weeks, which suggests to us that perhaps other Republicans don’t see a strong connection between keeping the government running and de-funding the health care bill. (And more importantly, they probably DO see a strong connection between their reelection chances and making sure millions of people still have jobs in a few weeks.) MinnPost quotes NY Democrat Chuck Schumer saying that teahadists like Bachmann are putting Boehner in a tough spot by refusing to compromise on the three-week extension. As liberals, we think this is awesome and encourage Bachmann to continue creating splits in the GOP by self-aggrandizing.

Bachmann: waah quit picking on me because I’m a conservative

March 19, 2011

So Bachmann’s been getting a lot of guff in the media about her TWO separate statements about the battles of Lexington and Concord being in New Hampshire (they were actually in Massachusetts, in what we hear are some very pricey suburbs). Rather than admit she made a mistake and point out that the world won’t end because of it, her response is apparently to complain that the media is only reporting it because she’s a conservative. Who needs a widdle pacifier?

(Salon says that in mounting this “defense,” Bachmann also put a definite number to employees of the “mainstream media”: 3,400.)

Bachmann: Tea Party is full of Democrats

March 18, 2011

On Faux News (where else could she get away with this?), Bachmann reportedly told one of the anchorbots that Democrats are “deathly afraid” of the tea party because it includes Democrats. Yessss. The Republican Party also includes pro-choice people, but in neither case is it a strong contingent.

They went on to agree that there’s no evidence of racism in the tea party. Again, the facts do not appear to be on their side.

Bachmann congratulates wrong state on being birthplace of the American Revolution

March 17, 2011

The Boston Globe says she mentioned this twice in two speeches, both times attributing the “shot heard ’round the world” to New Hampshire rather than Massachusetts. This is unlikely to hurt her with tea partiers, who in our opinion are better at assigning their views to the Framers than actually understanding who the Framers were and what they did. Some guy even told the newspaper that “every single [politician] in the room] has made the exact same mistake, maybe not on the same topic.” How is it the same mistake if it’s not on the same topic?

The same guy later praised her as “very intelligent.” You can evaluate his ability to make that determination for yourself.

The Globe had some fun with it.

Lawrence O’Donnell draws unkind conclusions about the intelligence of Bachmann’s staff and constituents.Keep makin’ Minnesota proud, lady.

Bachmann catches guff for voting to de-fund HAMP

March 16, 2011

According to the Minnesota Independent, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is targeting her specifically for not voting to save a part of the program that helps seniors who are underwater. (Not literally — this means they owe more on their mortgages than their homes are worth, which right now is usually because the housing market has crashed.) Ironically, her district was apparently the one with the highest foreclosure rate in Minnesota in 2008 and 2009.

We’re aware that her constituents have twice voted to keep her, so we suppose this isn’t necessarily voting-booth poison. However, we think Egypt is a good example of what happens to corrupt politicians when people are struggling for basic financial security. It is in her self-interest to avoid impoverishing her constituents TOO much. (It would also be within her creed as a Christian if she were the kind who actually tries to follow Jesus Christ.)

Bachmann suggests shutting down the government over the “hidden” health care money

March 15, 2011

The Hill reports that Bachmann has suggested that the GOP de-fund the government, triggering a shutdown that would put thousands or millions out of work, if the health care bill is not repealed. Sure, lady, the government will get right on that for you. Specifically, she wants the $105 billion the bill appropriates rescinded. As you may recall, she spent last week making herself a laughingstock by claiming this money was “hidden” when in fact she apparently just didn’t read the bill.

Actually, we think this would be brilliant PR for the Democrats, much like Scott Walker’s moves in Wisconsin were brilliant PR for the unions. Which party is the party that ground the government to a halt over petty partisan bickering? Oh yeah, the party that’s gonna lose in 2012.

EDIT: Star-Tribune editorial calls the claim baseless and Bachmann “a policy lightweight” who undermines her own credibility with “stunts” like this. Given all the Republican whining last year about how Democrats didn’t read the health care bill, we also enjoyed this line: “If the funding was a “secret,” it’s only because Bachmann didn’t read the bill. Her office this week blamed the press for not calling the money to the attention of Congress.” Those media elitists, always failing to do Bachmann’s job for her!

Bachmann on Wisconsin

March 14, 2011

The last time we checked, our girl was suggesting that the people of Wisconsin were not behind these protests, which was why only 70,000 showed up at the peak of the protests. The Twin Cities AV Club took on the issue March 4 (before the Wisconsin GOP finished its end-run around the legislature’s own rules) and found one of her famous half-truths:

And, of course, Michele Bachmann tells a half-truth. “Don’t let anyone tell you that the government workers in Wisconsin are losing their collective bargaining rights over wages,” Bachmann recently huffed. Of course, under Walker’s proposal, the union can’t negotiate wage increases that exceed annual changes in the consumer price index, unless approved by referendum. So, yes, those rights technically stay in place—for “losing,” just insert “drastically limiting.”

We look forward to seeing the people of Wisconsin continue to prove her wrong by recalling a few GOP state senators.

“Gangster” government

March 13, 2011

We’ve been holding off on commenting on her “gangster government” comments because they never really made any sense to us. How is the Obama administration like Al Capone or a modern street gang? It’s hard to make fun of stuff that comes way out of left field.

We still think it leaves something to be desired as a rhetorical tactic and a metaphor. But in the Washington Post, Jonathan Capehart addressed the issue through a racial lens, and that’s when it started to make sense. He suggests that “gangsters” is a code word for “black people,” and we suspect we know what Bachmann voters think of black people (assuming they’ve met any). He calls it “ugly dog-whistle politics,” which explains why we didn’t understand — the whistle is inaudible to people who don’t associate the word “gangster” with black faces. Like, say, the face on that semi-black president we have.

Bachmann compares Wisconsin’s fight against unions to Reagan, Lincoln

March 12, 2011

Surprisingly, her comparison was not to Reagan firing the air traffic controllers. Oh no! Scott Walker trying to bust the unions is like Reagan fighting communism, she said. Yes, teachers are totally JUST LIKE KGB spies.

According to Bachmann, it’s also like Lincoln fighting the Civil War. The American Independent has a funny story about that:

And Republicans act that way too. As KMPH reported last week, in 1840, Illinois state Rep. Abraham Lincoln jumped out of a second story window to prevent a vote that would have done away with the Illinois State Bank.

“On that date, the Democrats proposed an early adjournment, knowing this would bring a speedy end to the State Bank,” wrote Bill Coate. “The Whigs tried to counter by leaving the capitol building before the vote, but the doors were locked. That’s when Lincoln made his move. He headed for the second story, opened a window and jumped to the ground!”

Unlike the 14 Wisconsin Democrats — who fled to the Land of Lincoln — Lincoln was caught and returned to the Capitol in time for the House to adjourn.

She then followed up with the assertion that Obama is behind the protests in Madison, apparently because she is incapable of believing that state workers might have decided to protest without nefarious government interference, just because they like having health care.