(CNN) – In a rousing speech before a standing-room-only audience at a conservative conference in Iowa on Saturday, Minnesota Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann said "I'm in" for 2012.
Bachmann then asked the crowd to join her in pursuing her goals for the country. The thinly veiled comment was at the very least another step in her consideration of a possible run for the Republican presidential nomination.
Referring to the ideals of the founding fathers, Bachmann said, "You cannot build a nation unless it is built upon a rock-solid foundation. And America has that and it is the character, and it is the values of our people and that's why I am so absolutely confident in 2012.
"And so America has decided they're in for 2012, and so that's my question for you here today in Iowa. Are you in? Are you in for 2012? Are you in? Are you going to make it happen? Are we going to take our country back?" Bachmann asked, to cheers from the crowd.
"I agree with you! I say we do, I'm in, you're in, we will take this back in 2012," she said.
Earlier this week, CNN learned that Bachmann will form a presidential exploratory committee. The Minnesota Republican plans to file papers for the committee in early June, with an announcement likely around that same time.
But a source close to the congresswoman said that Bachmann could form the exploratory committee even earlier than June so that she could participate in early Republican presidential debates.
During the speech at Republican Rep. Steve King's “Conservative Principles” rally, Bachmann also touched on topics ranging from homeland security and immigration to health care, taxes and the spending fight in Washington. The possible GOP 2012 presidential contender bashed Obama administration policies including the recent military operation in Libya, and underlined her commitment to conservative values.
Speaking about the recent military action in Libya, Bachmann criticized President Barack Obama for engaging the U.S. in a "third Middle Eastern war" and compared Obama to former President Jimmy Carter.
"The president has us engaged it yet another, third Middle Eastern war, talk about March Madness, can anyone say Jimmy Carter?" Bachmann said.
On the health care bill, Bachmann hit at the administration for passing legislation she said would lead to increased costs. She referred to a “government takeover” of health care.
"The ultimate arrogance coming out of Washington is Obamacare. With this bill we're all going to be spending more and getting less," Bachmann said.
Bachmann also took aim at liberal Democrats such as New York Rep. Anthony Weiner and former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-California, earning boos from the crowd when she mentioned Weiner's name.
She blamed Pelosi for the rise in the national debt, saying "75 percent - that is the amount the national debt has increased just under the four years that Nancy Pelosi had the gavel."
Bachmann returned to themes she has touted throughout her career, slamming Washington for raising taxes and pushing for a reduction in government spending.
Referring to the tax code as a "weapon of mass destruction," Bachmann called for it to be abolished, saying, "From there we are going to fly."
– CNN Senior Political Editor Mark Preston contributed to this report.
She is nearly as scary as Palin.
I so hope that Palin runs, too. It would be extremely entertaining to watch those two debate!
President Obama will mop the floor with both of them!
Point by point, what are her goals? Economy, education, foreign policy, etc. etc. etc. No generalization.
I used to think Sarah Palin would be the death of the Republican Party. Now I know it is this mental midget from Minnesota! The problem with people like her and Ann Coulter is they really believe the tripe they are spewing!
Stock up on the popcorn - get it early - it will sell out before the show starts!!
Can't wait to hear more of her fear-mongering conspiracy theories. ha ha ha ha ha
Comedy writers everywhere say thank you.Michele!
She is conviently ignoring the fact that Bush was the president at the time when Pelosi first became speaker. I haven't heard her ideas to make sure that people don't become destitue like they did in the great depression. She doesn't understand that the outsourcing is because of the wages that are paid here and not the taxes. She is not fully thinking much in the image of Palin.
When facism comes to America it will wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross. – Sinclair Lewis, another Minnesotan
PLEASE do this!! If I could vote in a GOP primary I would LOVE for Bachmann to get the nomination. If the Democrats and Obama can't win then either the country has gone totally nuts or the Democrats just sat on their lazy butts like they did in 2010 and not vote and if the latter is the case then they would deserve to lose.
Bachmann in 2012. Really? Does anyone, ANYONE believe this idiot stands a chance?
Michele Bachmann has great conservative beliefs! It's time for a woman President of the United States! The earlier you declare your candidacy, Michele, the sooner the groundswell will form around you! Don't dilly-dally for too long!
Not too bright is she??
The tax rate for the highest percentile of income was around 70% in 1980. I'll agree that that is too high, but this notion that taxes are constantly going up is nonsense. Google it. Taxes have been whittled down ever since the Reagan era. Whether you think that is a good thing or a bad thing doesn't matter. Saying that taxes are going up under democrats is, simply, a lie.
You can't argue facts.
I believe taxes should go up to help pay for stuff. You get what you pay for. If the Republican Tea Party wants a third world country, they're gonna get it.
The woodwork is extremely busy divesting itself of the likes of this woman. Who would have imagined such stupidity and ignorance, such intolerance and exclusivity masked as moving this country forward. The tea party is not a democratic grass-roots movement, it is not progressive in any sense of the word, and it is funded and fired up by the well oiled machinations of far right cruel money. Bachmann is a joke; and just as S.Palin is fading into the annals, this one will take up the pathetic baton of the GOP as they scramble to define who they are and who they aren't. Their cadre is stunning.
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Trash starts to stink with time. This black helicopter, prison blimp nut will fade as Palin's garbage has. She only needs more public exposure.
Michele Bachmann Is just as big of a IDIOT as SARAN PALIN. They are both UNQUALIFIED to be President of America. And no one sure vote for any body back by the TEA PARTY and the KOCH'S BROTHER, If you do the poor and the Middle class will have no right at all, and Min wage will be drop to around five dollar and Hour. If that want you want too move America back too the 1970 than go a head and vote for a Republican In 2012. I use to be a Republican but never again, I'M a Independent voter now.