Monday, February 27, 2012

Tough Re-election Road Awaits Michele Bachmann

Rebounding from her failed presidential bid, Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann is

setting her sights on re-election to the House — but she faces a tough battle to retain her seat in a redrawn Minnesota district.

One recent poll showed Bachmann’s favorability rating among Minnesota voters at just 34 percent.

And the Minnesota congresswoman’s national base of conservative donors may be tiring of her pleas for money, as she carries a $1 million presidential campaign debt from her fumbled bid.

“May God bless you, and God bless the United States of America.” With those words, Bachmann departed the Republican presidential arena in January, following a disappointing sixth place finish in Iowa.

Many were surprised that one of the conservative movement’s newest icons would suffer such a disastrous defeat. But a series of fumbles and gaffes on the campaign trail not only caused her campaign to go into a tailspin, it tarnished her most important asset: her ability to raise funds from the grassroots across the nation.

During the presidential race tea partyers rallied to her side, despite a series of misstatements (that HPV vaccine causes mental retardation, for example) and campaign goofs.

The congresswoman’s presidential effort seemed to unravel in the days leading up to the Iowa caucus, when her state chairman Kent Sorenson suddenly announced he was quitting her campaign to join Ron Paul’s team.

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