November 10th, 2010
09:00 PM ET
8 years ago

Bachmann drops bid for GOP conference chair

(CNN) - Tea-Party favorite and Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann dropped out of the race for House Republican conference chair Wednesday night, avoiding what could have been a divisive bid against Texas Rep. Jeb Hensarling for the No. 3 spot in the House GOP leadership.

Rep. Bachmann, the chairwoman of the Tea Party caucus who had hoped to use her popularity in the influential movement to gain a leadership post, ultimately voiced her support for establishment-backed Hensarling Wednesday in a statement.

"Jeb Hensarling has my enthusiastic support for his candidacy to become Republican House Conference Chair," Bachmann said in a statement. "Jeb has demonstrated his commitment to limited government, reduced spending and lower taxes and he will be a strong voice for the Tea Party's call for these values."

Hensarling accepted the endorsement and praised Bachmann.

"Michele Bachmann is a committed movement conservative whose effective voice played an important role in America's decision to trust House Republicans once again," Hensarling said in a statement. "She is a dear friend, and I am humbled to earn her support. I look forward to her energetic leadership in a united House Republican Conference during the 112th Congress."

The House Republican Conference serves as the organizational body for all GOP House members, and is responsible for electing party leaders at the beginning of each Congress.

Bachmann and Hensarling have been jockeying for support within the party in recent days, though Hensarling seemed to garner more widespread support from his Republican colleagues. Prominent GOP leaders including House Minority Whip Rep, Eric Cantor of Virginia, and current conference chair, Indiana Rep. Mike Pence both endorsed Hensarling shortly after he announced his intention to seek the chairmanship last week.

One of the most outspoken critics of President Obama and the Democratic Party, Bachmann is a popular figure among the party's most faithful. But it remains unclear how much further her popularity extends beyond the most conservative wing of the GOP.

- CNN's Deirdre Walsh and Evan Glass contributed to this report

soundoff (55 Responses)
  1. Clwyd

    Next to sarah Pathetic this Minnesota nut is the next worst wacko in government. She needs deep psychological help!

    November 10, 2010 09:07 pm at 9:07 pm |
  2. once upon a horse

    lately it seems that there are more on the right that are voicing dismay with the likes of Bachmann and also Palin. Did it take this long for them to figure out these folks were Looney Tunes or did they just have to wait until after they made gains in the election to finally say something about them?

    November 10, 2010 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  3. andrewstl

    damn i was hoping her crazy rrear end would win she is fuuny to watch as she looks so foolish

    November 10, 2010 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  4. Drew

    "I love you Jeb; no, I love you Michelle; no I love you more, Jeb; but I love you even more, Michelle ... " Can I wretch now?

    November 10, 2010 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  5. E.J. in Tacoma

    What would we do without colorful people like Michele Bachmann to keep us entertained through the political season!!!!
    ej in tacoma

    November 10, 2010 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  6. Lisa

    Now that's the first non-crazy thing this woman's done in a long time! I guess I should thank her god for telling her to stop.

    November 10, 2010 09:37 pm at 9:37 pm |
  7. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Bachmann knows she can't put up, so she shut up. A big mouth is always a sign one lacks knowledge and will always back down.

    November 10, 2010 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  8. Terry

    And besides, she can't count to three.

    November 10, 2010 09:44 pm at 9:44 pm |
  9. Voldude

    I'd even be concerned about whomever she supported too. Then again, I'm not a Republican whack job.

    November 10, 2010 09:55 pm at 9:55 pm |
  10. e01938

    It's amazing this woman can stay in office.

    November 10, 2010 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  11. BIll

    You better listen woman!!! Git yer buscuits in the oven and yer buns ins the bed!!!!

    November 10, 2010 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  12. CTYank

    Probably a good thing, except that it frees her up for other mischief. There's no there there- between her ears.

    November 10, 2010 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  13. thomas

    Because she can't legislate , she can only do crazy talk !

    November 10, 2010 10:14 pm at 10:14 pm |
  14. Rick

    She's just scary.

    November 10, 2010 10:15 pm at 10:15 pm |
  15. Teddy

    Love the picture of Michelle. Leaves alot to the imagination.

    November 10, 2010 10:18 pm at 10:18 pm |

    GOD help US because MICHELE BACHMANN has got to be the biggest idiot ever to serve in congress ,for sure!

    November 10, 2010 10:24 pm at 10:24 pm |
  17. LizinStLouis

    The truth is that M. Bachman sucks..worse than Palin a 100 fold! She tells nutty stories e.g. Sharia law being practiced somewhere in this country or say President Obama spending $200 million per day during his current tour to Asia..she is definitely a nut job!!!

    November 10, 2010 10:29 pm at 10:29 pm |
  18. Darth Vadik, CA

    You're just a pretty face with a big mouth doll, you really don't think a bunch of old white guys will have a woman in charge do you, oh please girl, only place you belong according to your party is barefoot in the kitchen and pregnant...

    November 10, 2010 10:29 pm at 10:29 pm |
  19. DanteX


    Michele Bachmann. Joe Burton. Mitch McConnell. Rand Paul.


    November 10, 2010 10:32 pm at 10:32 pm |
  20. KathyC in Minnesota

    Michele Bachmann must have realized that other Republicans see her more as a polarizing figure.

    November 10, 2010 10:42 pm at 10:42 pm |
  21. Joe

    Now is only this uneducated whack job would just drop out of the human race...or at the very least, leave Congress. She's a total nutbag. She's got fake college degrees from "biblical universities" and is an embarrassment to the nation.

    November 10, 2010 10:44 pm at 10:44 pm |
  22. Gary P Salmon

    I'm a Conservative Republican voter from upstate NY who views the likes of Michele Bachmann, Sarah Palin, and Christine O'Donnell as just as bad as Nancy Pelosi, only on the other side of the political spectrum!

    November 10, 2010 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  23. Seattle Sue

    Sort of like that lady that dropped out of the governorship of Alaska.

    November 10, 2010 11:03 pm at 11:03 pm |
  24. ThinkAgain

    It's too bad Bachmann didn't get the gig; the higher the profile for her, the more people would see just what a loony this woman is.

    Not to mention, she's a bald-faced liar. Her doozy about President Obama spending $200 million a day on his recent trip to India and the Far East is a perfect example of just how willing Republicans are to spread lies, fear and hatred in their quest for power. (BTW, the war in Iraq costs $150 million a day; just how anyone could believe a Presidential trip would cost more is beyond me.)

    Everyone from the Wall Street Journal on down proved that Bachmann's tale was a lie – but did she take it back? No. Did Fox apologize for spreading her lie? No.

    Wake up, folks, the Republicans, their mouthpieces, and lackeys (Fox, Limbaugh, etc.) want nothing more than to destroy our President and all the good he is trying to do for our country.

    Only an ignorant fool believes otherwise.

    November 10, 2010 11:04 pm at 11:04 pm |
  25. Liz

    bachman is another republican non-intellect. sorry, but what is it with republicans who put these sophomoric women up as candidates? talk about setting the womens movement back decades!

    November 10, 2010 11:04 pm at 11:04 pm |
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