Bachmann: I’m scholarly
June 28th, 2011
08:19 AM ET
3 years ago

Bachmann: I’m scholarly

(CNN) - Newly declared Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann defended her past gaffes Tuesday by touting her background as an attorney and small business owner.

“People can make mistakes and I wish I could be perfect every time I say something, but I can’t,” Bachmann said on CNN’s “American Morning.” “But one thing people know about me is that I’m a substantive, serious person and I have a strong background.”


The Minnesota congresswoman addressed her most recent slip up when she incorrectly said movie star John Wayne was born in Waterloo, Iowa, Bachmann's native city and the site of her presidential announcement Monday. Wayne was born in nearby Winterset.

“John Wayne’s parents first home was in Waterloo, Iowa and he was from Iowa and of course the main point I was making are the sensibilities of John Wayne, which is patriotism, love of country, standing up for our nation, that positive enthusiasm is what America’s all about,” Bachmann said. “And that’s of course my main point.”

When asked if it is harder to prove herself because of her gender, the three term representative said “people just need to know what a person’s background is.”

“I'm introducing myself now to the American people so that they can know that I have a strong academic scholarly background, more important I have a real life background,” Bachmann said.

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Filed under: 2012 • Michele Bachmann • TV-American Morning
soundoff (44 Responses)
  1. lgny

    When has she produced anything that could even remotely be described as scholarly or even reflective?!

    June 28, 2011 08:22 am at 8:22 am |
  2. Steve, New York City

    I confess that I stronly DISLIKE Bachmann. However, I also believe that some people might be punching "below the belt" because of her gender (and that is totally unfair).

    June 28, 2011 08:26 am at 8:26 am |
  3. Jasen

    Bachman obviously didn't read the 1971 Playboy interview with John Wayne, so of course she wouldn't know that he was an admitted white supremacist. But then again, racism and white supremacy has been associated with patriotism as of late, so maybe Bachman's main point right.

    June 28, 2011 08:32 am at 8:32 am |
  4. GJGVT

    “People can make mistakes and I wish I could be perfect every time I say something, but I can’t,” Bachmann said <<– being "in the ballpark" 50% of the time would be a good start

    June 28, 2011 08:35 am at 8:35 am |
  5. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    It has to be difficult for a 'scholarly' person like Michele Bachmann to have to explain why the farm subsidies she received were not government handouts, why her non stop attacks and votes against the middle class were helpful to get our economy growing after the Bush/ republican near depression, why her votes in favor of wall street, big oil, and billionaires were helpful. In addition, she should explain in a scholarly fashion, why she does not support medicare, VA, seniors, poor children, police, firemen, teachers, nurses, and women's rights. Mittens, as a true republican, at least takes both sides of every issue.

    June 28, 2011 08:35 am at 8:35 am |
  6. Nunya

    Scholarly but a liar? Anyone who comes from the town where John Wayne was born is going to know it beyond a shadow of a doubt, because the people in that small town will obsess over their connection to a celebrity of that caliber. (I come from a small midwestern town, I've seen it in action.) No way she would be simply confused on such – unless she is such a ditz that she went through pre-adult years completely unaware of her surroundings. But since we know she's scholarly...

    June 28, 2011 08:36 am at 8:36 am |
  7. Inrealityhere

    You may only make mistakes if the lib er al me di a likes you. Anyone remember who said "57" states?
    Godlessness has influenced this nation through the education system and media for years; precisely why we have spiraled down into the abyss.

    June 28, 2011 08:37 am at 8:37 am |
  8. Baby Boomer

    I'm in no way a supporter of Congresswoman Bachmann. However, I do have one suggestion for her. Please try using GOOGLE!!! A little research would go a looooong way for this wanna be POTUS.

    June 28, 2011 08:38 am at 8:38 am |
  9. paul

    There is "book" smart and there is "common sense" smart. Bachman may have degrees but she completely fails when it comes to common sense. She constantly gets facts of history wrong. She makes common sense gaffes on a regular basis. Google politifact "Michele Bachmann quotes" and check her accuracy for facts. Maybe she can get away with blaming the media (like Palin). "I blame the media when they quote me word for word"

    June 28, 2011 08:39 am at 8:39 am |
  10. A disgusted former Republican

    Bachmann is mistaken again. She is not just now introducing herself to the American people. She did that long ago with her crazy talk and her hare-brained ideas. Bachmann is nothing more than a media whore. Not presidential material.

    June 28, 2011 08:39 am at 8:39 am |
  11. The Elephant in The Room

    Ms Bachmann has a well documented, verifiable, you-tube-video chronicled HISTORY of either being oblivious of facts, OR playing fast-n-loose with them. Scholarly people don`t do that. Neither do honorable people. So Americans likely won`t see her as either of those.

    June 28, 2011 08:40 am at 8:40 am |
  12. 'merica ruined by rethugs

    She might be scholarly.....for a republican. But that's setting the bar pretty low.

    June 28, 2011 08:40 am at 8:40 am |
  13. FM

    Why can't this woman learn from Sarah!! "Just hide if you are not sure of what you are talking about"! There is always a huge price to pay if one lips out anything outside their knowledge.

    June 28, 2011 08:40 am at 8:40 am |
  14. Realistic

    Oh boy the circus is coming to a town near you soon. Everytime politicians try to connect with the people, they disconnect with common sense and with the people. No body really cares that she thinks she is like J.W but people care when she want to investigate memembers of congress for being un-american. That is un-american trying to investigate a serving memeber of congress for having an un-american view. Who would be the judge, her, Mitch McConnel, Crying boy John B, Rep. Paul Ryan? Maybe she thinks only republicans have pro-american views and if so, than she is dangerous and un-american because than if you disagree with her views, than you and your family are un-american. 'Scholarly" is not a word that come to mind when I think of M.bachy...More like, "idiotic" and "self serving" and "disrespectful" and "arrogant".

    June 28, 2011 08:41 am at 8:41 am |
  15. Tara

    A mistake??? Saying the President is un American? Calling for the investigations on House members and Senate members for un American ideas? Yeah those are mistakes this lady makes me ill with all her bigotry and hate

    June 28, 2011 08:41 am at 8:41 am |
  16. The Real Tom Paine

    Sorry, but there is nothing to indicate any original thoughts have come from the mouth, mind, or pen of Ms Bachmann. The Lexington/Concord and Jiohn Wayne slips are cases of screwing up historic trivia, not being a scholar. She has not taken her book learning and real-life experience and used that to create policy that breaks new ground, and she has not even been able to organize her thoughts in a consistent, coherent manner. She is clearly not a scholar, and for her to downplay her intellect in order to tout her real-life experience is another indication she does not regard academics as very important. Newt Gingrich, for all his numerous faults, is a scholar who has put out his ideas through books, papers, articles, lectures, etc: where are Bachmann's ideas? Does she have any? Thats what she needs to address, and I doubt that she will. I don't think she's disciplined enough to do that, and you need discipline to be an effective President. She will engage in childish attacks that rile up the base, but won't convince enough Independent voters she has what it takes to win the nomination, much less win a general election and run the country.

    June 28, 2011 08:43 am at 8:43 am |
  17. bhavin

    If you are so much scholarly then can you please give us a detailed solution on how to resolve our economic problems? Can you let us know with facts and details how you plan to bring back the jobs from cheap quality China and fakers of India?

    June 28, 2011 08:47 am at 8:47 am |
  18. chris

    sorry bachmann but your "education" is suspect at best. I have degrees from colleges miles above her schools in every ranking standard, so I guess that makes me much more qualified to be president.

    June 28, 2011 08:49 am at 8:49 am |
  19. Seattle Sue

    Mrs Bachmann may be scholarly, an attorney and be a small business owner but she sure says some stupid things. And her plans to cut taxes have proven not to work other wise we would have very small unemployment as we have had Bush tax cuts in effect for ten years and look at the mess we are in. BTW Jimmy Carter is credited with creating 6.9 million more jobs in 4 years than both President 41 and President 43 Bush created together in 12 years.

    June 28, 2011 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  20. 21k

    if you have to tell people you are "scholarly", you probably aren't.

    June 28, 2011 08:53 am at 8:53 am |
  21. bb

    "I'm from Waterloo. I have Waterlooan values. I attended an unaccredited college, and like to call myself a former tax attorney. I have major tax discrepancies, but I have those strong Waterlooan values, and lots of kids, and no fear of speaking in public. Doesn't matter if every fact checking source finds almost all of what I say completely false and laughable – I have Waterloo values. Somebody tell me again, what ARE Waterloo values?"

    June 28, 2011 08:55 am at 8:55 am |
  22. Bill

    Good Grief! I've never seen such a bunch of haters. Your comments are ugly and self demeaning. You may think you are somehow better than others but, believe me, your perspective needs broadened.

    June 28, 2011 08:57 am at 8:57 am |
  23. Randy, San Francisco

    Can Americans trust Bachmann to answer the Hot Phone at 3 a.m. and make the right decision? She speaks without careful thought or consideration, a dangerous habit when dealing with allies and enemies. She is among the least qualified in the GOP field to be president.

    June 28, 2011 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  24. ja

    hitler was scholarly, but not good for humanity

    June 28, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  25. IowaRepub

    Okay, I just want Michelle Bachman to explain why she has bilked the foster care system out of thousands of dollars 23 foster kids!

    June 28, 2011 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
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