Tag Archives: Michele Bachmann

Romney Wins Iowa by Eight Votes


Mitt Romney - Caricature

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Mitt Romney’s quest to lock down the Republican Presidential nomination with a commanding finish in the Iowa caucuses was undercut last night by the candidacy of Rick Santorum.

In the first Republican contest of the season, the two candidates were separated by a sliver of votes, with Mr. Romney declared the winner by eight ballots early Wednesday morning. Mr. Santorum and Mr. Romney, whose views represent the polar sides of the party, each had 24.6%.

The last time the Iowa caucuses produced a close outcome was in 1980, when George Bush beat Ronald Reagan by two percentage points.

Representative Ron Paul of Texas was a close third on Tuesday with 21% of the caucus votes. Mr. Paul outpaced his rivals among caucusgoers under forty but dropped behind Mr. Romney and Mr. Santorum among older voters.

Mr. Gingrich was in fourth place with 13% of the votes, followed by Mr. Perry with 10%, and Representative Michele Bachmann of Minnesota with 5%. More than 120,000 Republicans took part in the caucus, a turnout that was higher than four years ago.

With Mr. Perry heading back to Texas, Mr. Gingrich pledged to press forward and be on the stage at the next debate on Saturday in New Hampshire.

Mr. Romney won the most support among those who said defeating President Obama was the most important quality in a candidate.

Via The New York Times.

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Republican Candidates Fight for Spot on Virginia Ballot

Newt Gingrich - Caricature

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Four of the candidates not on the Republican primary ballot in Virginia are joining Rick Perry‘s lawsuit to have their names added.

In a letter to the Virginia Republican Party and Board of Elections, Newt Gingrich, Michele Bachmann, Rick Santorum, and Jon Huntsman gave notice that they’ll join the suit.

The only candidates on the ballot are Mitt Romney and Ron Paul. Gov. Perry and Mr. Gingrich submitted signatures but after a review of the names, the state party determined there weren’t the required 10,000 registered voters.

“This should not be a gauntlet to figure out how you can make it virtually impossible to run for President,” Mr. Gingrich said at a press conference in Atlantic, Iowa. “There is already a system that enables the voters to decide who they want to run for President.”

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Repbulican Presidential Candidates Promise to Hate Gays

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Every major Republican presidential candidate has promised to enshrine hate in the U.S. Constitution with a ban on marriage equality.

With the Iowa Caucuses just days away, their promises present a threat to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people and their families.

Newt Gingrich recently called marriage equality a “temporary aberration.”

Rick Perry launched a television ad blitz tearing into lesbians and gays serving in the armed forces. He also called President Obama’s decision to promote LGBT human rights abroad “silly.”

Mitt Romney is going door to door in Iowa to trumpet his “pro-marriage” credentials.

Michele Bachmann recently proclaimed that as President, she would do nothing more to protect LGBT people from bullying and discrimination. She even asserted that gays and lesbians already have the right to marry, as long as it’s to someone of the opposite sex.

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Gingrich Will Not Appear on Virginia Primary Ballot

English: Former U.S. Representative and Speake...

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Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich failed to submit the required 10,000 signatures needed to qualify for the Republican primary ballot in Virginia.

The announcement came one day after the Virginia GOP determined that Texas Governor Rick Perry didn’t meet the same requirements to appear on the ballot.

Virginia requires candidates to submit petitions with 10,000 signatures from registered voters. Four hundred signatures must come from voters in each congressional district.

The Virginia GOP said on its Twitter feed that former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and Texas Representative Ron Paul submitted enough signatures. Rep. Michele Bachmann, Gov. Jon Huntsman, and Sen. Rick Santorum did not submit petitions.

Virginia holds its Republican primary on March 6.

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Michele “Lyin’ Ass Bitch” Bachmann Calls Out NBC

Official photo, circa 2007

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When Republican Presidential candidate Michele Bachmann walked on stage for Late Night with Jimmy Fallon on November 22, the Roots welcomed her with Fishbone‘s 1985 tune “Lyin’ Ass Bitch”.

Representative Bachmann didn’t realize she’d been slammed until later that day when news of the tune’s title hit the web.

Drummer ?uestlove defended his “tongue in cheek” song choice, adding, “I feel bad if her feelings were hurt.”

They were. She fumed to Fox News on November 23 of her “outrage” that NBC didn’t discipline ?uestlove. Jimmy Fallon got a pass. “I love him,” she said of the host. “I accept Jimmy’s apology, but this really needs to come from NBC.”

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Six Presidential Hopefuls Faced Tough Questions at Saturday’s Forum

Six Republican Presidential candidates faced questions on their ideological bona fides during a policy-heavy forum on Fox News Channel on Saturday night.

Newt Gingrich, the former House Speaker, was pressed on how conservatives can “trust that a President Gingrich will not advance these sorts of big government approaches” that he advocated in the past, including his support for a mandate that citizens get health insurance.

Representative Michele Bachmann was asked how she would carry out her call to remove all illegal immigrants in the United States or pay the $135 billion to do so.

Mitt Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts, was asked questions about his health care overhaul there, and what he would say to President Obama if the President were to note during a general election debate its similarities to the federal health care law.

The candidates faced these questions from a roster of attorneys general who filed legal cases against the 2009 health care law: Pam Bondi of Florida, who brought the suit the Supreme Court agreed to hear; Ken Cuccinelli of Virginia, a spokesman for legal action against the law; and Scott Pruitt of Oklahoma. They were gathered by the Fox News host Mike Huckabee, the former governor of Arkansas.

It was one of the more substantive events in the Republican contest. The candidates faced the panel solo and did not interact, leaving intraparty politics largely out of it, except for Gov. Rick Perry of Texas, who urged the audience to give him “a second look,” a tacit acknowledgment of his drop in polls and a new opportunity after Herman Cain’s decision to suspend his campaign.

The attorneys general, new to Presidential politics, did not let their own general ideological agreement with the candidates get in the way of tough questions about how they would carry out their proposals.

They seemed to give Mr. Gingrich the hardest time. He was grilled on calls he has made to abolish federal courts whose rulings he disagrees with. It is a position that invariably wins applause from conservative audiences, but the attorneys general, conservative Republicans all, seemed to raise a collective eyebrow.

Mr. Cuccinelli had big disagreements with Mr. Gingrich, asking him how he would assure conservatives that his less ideologically pure positions would not trickle into his White House. Mr. Gingrich said he would introduce a “very clearly philosophically driven program” that would train his appointees and tell them “this is where this administration is going.”

Mr. Romney parried questions about the Massachusetts health care law, repeating that his policy was less ambitious and did not seek to upend the health care system the way he said Pres. Obama had hoped the federal law would.

Mr. Cuccinelli stayed with his line of questioning. “You would agree, wouldn’t you,” he said, “what you did in that bill in Massachusetts in 2006 affected the entire industry. Correct?”

Mr. Romney said that “for the 92% of us that were already insured, nothing changed.”

Mr. Cuccinelli asked Rep. Bachmann how she would handle environmental disagreements across state lines if she were to end the Environmental Protection Agency. When Ms. Bachmann answered that “a lot of these cases would be negotiated,” he pressed, “You cannot just negotiate without a legal foundation and thereby compel both sides to participate.”

Ms. Bondi asked former Senator Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania which environmental regulations he would allow. Mr. Santorum said the problem was that environmental laws that have been on the books for decades were overly broad, allowing regulators to craft many rules. He promised to have Congress rewrite the laws to be much narrower.

Mr. Pruitt asked Representative Ron Paul of Texas about his opposition to the PATRIOT Act. Mr. Paul responded by saying, “Are you going to put cameras in every household or whatever? I don’t think it’s a lack of laws that are our problem.”

Via The New York Times.

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Republicans Make Border-Fence Promises They Can’t Keep

Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich have promised to complete a 1,950-mile fence. Michele Bachmann wants a double fence. Ron Paul pledged to secure the nation’s southern border by any means necessary. Rick Perry says he can secure it without a fence.

A border that is sealed off to all illegal immigrants and drugs flowing north is a promise none of them could keep.

Governor Perry, the governor of a state that makes up roughly 65% of America’s border with Mexico, knows that. What he’s actually pledging is achieving “operational control” of the border, defined by the U.S. Border Patrol as areas where it can detect, respond to and interdict illegal activity either at the border or after entry into the U.S.

The U.S. Border Patrol says 873 miles of the border, about 44%, are under operational control. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano has said that “the border is better now than it ever has been.”

Even getting this far required bolstering the ranks of the Border Patrol to the highest levels ever, nearly double the 9,500 in 2004. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has a record number of agents on the border. Five Predator drones patrol strategic parts of it, with a sixth coming by the end of the year. About 650 miles of fencing has been constructed, and 1,200 National Guard soldiers dispatched last year to Texas, California, Arizona and New Mexico have had their deployment extended through the end of 2011.

Last week, Mr. Gingrich signed a pledge to build a fence stretching the length of the border by 2013. That may help him recover from a statement that illegal immigrants who have been in the U.S. for many years should be allowed to stay in the country.

Gov. Perry has opposed the fence, saying it would take ten to fifteen years to build, cost $30 billion, and wouldn’t work anyway. He wants to flood the border with more National Guard troops. He also wants to build fencing in high-traffic areas and make better use of surveillance. Gov. Perry claims that would mean operational control by January 2014.

Mr. Romney, meanwhile, has publicly agreed with Perry that tackling larger immigration policy reform is impossible without first securing the border.

U.S. authorities already have made strides toward that goal. The number of illegal immigrants in the U.S. peaked at 12 million in 2007, but then dropped by almost 1 million through 2009, and has largely held steady since then at about 11.1 million.

Apprehensions of illegal immigrants have fallen. In 2011, the Border Patrol captured the lowest number of illegal immigrants on the southwestern border in four decades.

The U.S. economy makes would-be illegal immigrants less likely to come. Those who do must contend with Mexico’s drug war, which has seen cartel gunmen slaughter people heading north and dump their bodies in mass graves. The trip is now so risky that the number of illegal immigrants using pricey people smugglers has spiked.

Spillover into the U.S. of Mexican drug violence is difficult to measure. El Paso, Texas, ranks among the safest cities in the U.S., even though it’s across from violence-torn Ciudad Juarez.

Via Yahoo!


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Fact-Checking Michele Bachmann’s Debate Performances

I’m happy to say I don’t think that I’ve said anything inaccurate in any of the debates. And I’m extremely grateful for that. It’s a high-profile stage and so I’m grateful that I don’t think I’ve made a blunder.

-Michele Bachmann, on NPR’s Morning Edition (November 25, 2011)

Representative Michele Bachmann (Paul Sancya, Associated Press)

In an interview on Friday, Rep. Bachmann acknowledged that she is sometimes truth-challenged. “I wish I was perfection walking on air, but I’m not,” she told Steve Inskeep. “I’ve gotten things wrong. But I try very hard to get my facts right, and there’s times when I’ve said things that are inaccurate and I regret that.”

Then she made the statement above, that she’d said nothing inaccurate in the debates.

The Republican candidates for President have already held at least ten debates. Here are a few highlights and analyses of Rep. Bachmann’s performance during those sessions.

New Hampshire debate: June 13, 2011

“The CBO, the Congressional Budget Office, has said that Obamacare will kill 800,000 jobs.”  The CBO never said the health law was killing jobs. After the debate, The Washington Post awarded this claim Three Pinocchios.

“Senior citizens get this more than any other segment of our population, because they know in Obamacare the President of the United States took away $500 billion — a half-trillion dollars — out of Medicare, shifted it to Obamacare to pay for younger people.”  The Medicare savings in the health-care law are aimed at providers, not seniors; seniors will benefit from the law. People younger than fifty-five might face higher premiums under the Republican plan for Medicare. The Post found this statement worth Two Pinocchios.

Iowa debate: August 11, 2011

“In the last two months, I was leading on the issue of not increasing the debt ceiling.” Rep. Bachmann does not play a leadership role in Congress and had no involvement in the debt ceiling discussions, except rhetorically.

The Congress gave Barack Obama a blank check for $2.4 trillion. What did the American people get in return? Twenty-one billion [dollars] in illusory cuts.” Rep. Bachmann’s reference to $21 billion in “illusory cuts” refers only to the impact on the deficit in the 2012 fiscal year. Over ten years, the deficit reduction amounts to $917 billion. (Incidentally, a blank check means there is no dollar amount.)

Reagan Library debate: September 7, 2011

“Obamacare is killing jobs. We know that from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.” She said it again! It’s still wrong.

“Obamacare took over one-sixth of the American economy. […] If we fail to repeal Obamacare in 2012, it will be with us forever and it will be socialized medicine.” This is not true, no matter how often candidates say that the health-care law represents socialized medicine or took over one-sixth of the economy. Socialized medicine is a single-payer system in which the government pays the bills and controls costs (much like Medicare).

“As a matter of fact, what he’s done is, he’s said in fact to Israel that they need to shrink back to their indefensible 1967 borders.” President Obama never said this. The Post gave Rep. Bachmann Four Pinocchios when she claimed it the first time. The President gave a speech in May in which he said the 1967 border should be a starting point for negotiations between the Israelis and Palestinians. He made clear he was not saying the lines should be Israel’s border. He was even thanked by Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu in a speech to Congress.

Tampa debate: September 12, 2011

“President Obama embedded $105,464,000,000 in Obamacare in postdated checks to implement this bill.” Rep. Bachmann’s assertion of $105 billion “embedded” in the health-care law was a claim for which she earned four Pinocchios. Her charge that this money was “hidden” does not have credibility. The Congressional Budget Office analyzed money for these programs before the legislation was voted into law. Since then, the Obama administration has issued a new release every time it spent some of the funds.

Orlando debate: September 22, 2011

“I didn’t make that claim, nor did I make that statement. Immediately after the debate, a mother came up to me, and she was visibly shaken and heartbroken because of what her daughter had gone through, and so I only related what her story was.” Rep. Bachmann was trying to spin her way out of a problem because she had been attacked for saying the HPV vaccine was “potentially dangerous.” She made that statement before she mentioned the distraught mother.

New Hampshire debate: October 11, 2011

“It was the federal government that pushed the subprime loans. It was the federal government that pushed the Community Reinvestment Act.”  The notion that the CRA, approved in 1977, had anything much to do with a lending crisis that flowered in 2007 and 2008 has been roundly discredited.

CNBC debate: November 9, 2011

 “When you have 53% of Americans paying federal income taxes, but you have 47% of Americans who pay no federal income taxes, you have a real problem.” This “fact” ignores a key part of the federal tax system: payroll taxes. For many, payroll taxes are a greater part of their tax burden than income taxes. When all federal tax liabilities are included, it is clear that only a small percentage pay no form of federal tax. Rep. Bachmann is proposing a solution (making everyone pay at least the cost of two Big Macs) for which there is no problem.

CNN National Security debate: November 22, 2011

“This is one thing we know about Barack Obama: He has essentially handed over our interrogation of terrorists to the ACLU. He’s outsourced it to them. Our CIA has no ability to have any form of interrogation for terrorists.” The ACLU has been critical of President Obama for continuing Bush-era anti-terror policies. Rep. Bachmann is incorrect to say the CIA cannot interrogate terrorists. The CIA is part of the High Value Interrogation Group, established by Pres. Obama in 2009, which brings “together the most effective and experienced interrogators and support personnel from across the Intelligence Community, the Department of Defense and law enforcement.”

“Almost every decision that the President has made since he came in has been one to put the United States in a position of unilateral disarmament, including the most recent decision he made to cancel the Keystone pipeline.” Pres. Obama did not cancel the Canadian oil pipeline. The State Department delayed the decision.

“It’s because Iran has announced they plan to strike Israel. They’ve stated as recently as August — just before President Ahmadinejad came to the U.N. General Assembly, he said that he wanted to eradicate Israel from the face of the Earth. He has said that if he has a nuclear weapon, he will use it to wipe Israel off the face of the Earth, he will use it against the United States of America.” Iranian officials have never said they have a nuclear weapon; they have denied having such a program. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad never said he would use a nuclear weapon against Israel. In fact, as examined by The Post, he may not have ever said he wanted to wipe Israel off the map. There is dispute on whether this was actually a mistranslation.

The record clearly shows that Bachmann has said many inaccurate statements during the debates, sometimes repeatedly.

Via The Washington Post.

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Gingrich Clashes with Other Candidates over Illegal Immigration

Gingrich's official portrait as Speaker

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Representative Michele Bachmann renewed her attack on Saturday of Newt Gingrich over illegal immigration, saying he favors “amnesty” for all illegal immigrants.

Rep. Bachmann released a letter that Mr. Gingrich signed in 2004 supporting a proposal by President Bush for a guest-worker program that would have given undocumented workers employee benefits.

Rep. Bachmann called Mr. Gingrich “the most liberal G.O.P. candidate on the issue of immigration reform.”

The issue arose after a debate on Tuesday night in which Mr. Gingrich called for a “humane” solution for illegal immigrants.

The Republican base has moved to the right on the issue since Pres. Bush floated his guest-worker program, which he dropped before his 2004 re-election campaign.

Republican primary voters disapprove of any program suggesting amnesty for illegal immigrants.

On Wednesday, Mr. Romney attacked Mr. Gingrich for tying legal status to the time someone has been in the country. “How about someone who has been here 20 years?” he said. “How about 12 years? How about 10? 5? 3?” He, too, labeled Mr. Gingrich’s proposal “amnesty.”

Mr. Gingrich said Friday at a campaign appearance that his Republican rivals were twisting his position. He repeated his support for a system to give legal status to some who have long been in the U.S., stating the least would be twenty-five years. He would leave the choice to grant legal status to local community boards.

Mr. Gingrich said he would secure the Mexican border by January 1, 2014 and fine businesses that hired undocumented workers, but in suggesting anything less than deporting all 11 million illegal immigrants, he opens himself up to charges of “amnesty.’’

Rep. Bachmann, who has made a hard line on illegal immigration a signature of her campaign, repeated that Mr. Gingrich favors amnesty for all 11 million.

The February 2004 letter that she circulated, printed in The Wall Street Journal, was an indication of how conservative opinion has shifted on the issue. Among its signatories was Ed Goeas, who earlier this year was an adviser to Mrs. Bachmann.


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Herman Cain on Pizza, Muslims, and What Frightens Him

Herman Cain, Presidential Candidate

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Herman Cain is really busy these days, but the former Godfather’s CEO apparently always has time for pizza.

Continuing his un­or­tho­dox campaign route, Cain sat down with GQ magazine for a pizza party. Here’s a look at Cain’s deepest thoughts on pizza (and other things).

  1. Cain thinks veggie pizza is sissy pizza. (“A manly man don’t want it piled high with vegetables! He would call that a sissy pizza.”)
  2. Pizzas have no party. (“If it’s great pizza, it transcends party affiliation, just like a good idea—like 9-9-9.”)
  3. Cain says a Muslim told him that “a majority of Muslims share the extremist views.”
  4. If Michele Bachmann were an ice cream, she would be Tutti-frutti. (“I know I’m going to get in trouble!” he says.)
  5. The prospect of a Rick Perry Presidency frightens him. (“You don’t only have to be commander and chief, you have to be communicator in chief.)

More on PostPolitics.

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