Bachmann links Pawlenty to Obama
July 24th, 2011
04:16 PM ET
3 years ago

Bachmann links Pawlenty to Obama

(CNN) - After repeated attacks on her record from Republican presidential rival and fellow Minnesotan Tim Pawlenty, Michele Bachmann hit back Sunday, vehemently contrasting her record in Congress with his as governor.

Bachmann said that while she was working against excessive spending, cap and trade, TARP and the individual health care mandate, Pawlenty was praising the same plans and leaving his state with a budget crisis.

"Executive experience is not an asset if it simply means bigger government and more intrusive government," Bachmann wrote in a statement. "Actions speak louder than words."

Ahead of the high stakes Ames straw poll in Iowa, Pawlenty has criticized Bachmann, who is leading recent polls in the first-in-the-nation caucus state, over her record in Congress, which he said consists of giving speeches and offering "failed amendments in Congress."

In an interview with CNN Chief Political Correspondent Candy Crowley Friday, Pawlenty said he doubted the American people would elect a president who lacked executive experience.

"These are really serious times and there hasn't been somebody who went [directly] from the U.S. House of Representatives to the presidency, I think, in over a hundred years, and there's a reason for that," Pawlenty said.

When asked by CNN about the not-so-veiled jab Saturday, Bachmann didn't attack Pawlenty, and instead said she is very proud of her record of service in Washington and Minnesota.

"What I have focused on is going against the agenda of growing big government in Washington. I've been very effective," Bachmann said. "I've brought the voice of the people that I serve in Minnesota to the halls of Congress."

But Sunday's statement was different. She took on Pawlenty by name and issue, even comparing him to President Barack Obama.

"Governor Pawlenty said in 2006, 'The era of small government is over … the government has to be more proactive and more aggressive.' That's the same philosophy that, under President Obama, has brought us record deficits, massive unemployment, and an unconstitutional health-care plan," Bachmann said. "Real-world actions speak louder than the words of career politicians."

Pawlenty Spokesman Alex Conant responded to Bachmann's statement Sunday, saying the Congresswoman "has her facts wrong."

"The truth is that there is very little difference between Governor Pawlenty and Congresswoman Bachmann on their issue positions," Conant said. "The difference is that when Governor Pawlenty was scoring conservative victories to cut spending, pass market-based health care reform, and transform a supreme court from liberal to conservative, and was elected twice in a very blue state, Congresswoman Bachmann was giving speeches and offering failed amendments, all while struggling mightily to hold onto the most Republican house seat in the state."


Filed under: 2012 • Iowa • Michele Bachmann • Tim Pawlenty
soundoff (171 Responses)
  1. Liz the First

    Comparing Pawlenty to Obama is an insult... to Obama. "Liberal fantasy world," Derek??? seriously??? we're not the ones who think humans and dinosaurs existed at the same time, that you can have a decent country without paying for it, that there's no such thing as climate change. the repugs live in a bizarro alternate universe where things are only true if you want them to be and if you say something long enough and loud enough, it becomes true. sorry, Derek, you're the one in the fantasy world.

    July 24, 2011 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  2. Indy

    Pawlenty has the facts to back him up on this one. Bachmann has very little for accomplishments and all the lies she is spewing will only be believed by those that are too blind to see the truth. Bachmann will never get the Republication nomination and her support will never go past her base. She has nothing to run on other then Government bad, Obama bad,Taxes bad and if you combine that with her reputation of recieving handouts from Government she is doomed after Iowa.Most people are smart enough to know that the economy will hit rock bottom if Republicans ever got a chance to finish destroying middle class.

    July 24, 2011 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  3. Oldie in TampaBay

    the nasties haven't even started yet .. just give it a fwe months & watch the fur fly:-)

    July 24, 2011 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  4. Sam I Am

    Bachman will play well to the Tea Party, as they rarely fact check, and seem to be best at name calling, complaining, and name-calling, but have no real agenda that resonates with anyone but other Tea Partiers. They are hurling insults at both the Republicans and the Democrats, both of which they've made childish school-yard names up for. What Bachman, Palin, and the rest of that bunch don't seem to be able to get their heads around is that the two parties they are so set against hold the vast majority of voters in the US, with Independents making up the final meaninful percentages. All three entities are tired of Tea Partiers complaining and name-calling and never, not once, giving any sort of real-world agenda to solve even the most minor of the challenges this country has facing it. No, sorry gang. Stealing an idea from an already well-established politician and calling it your own may fool the Tea Partiers, but it doesn't fool anyone with more than a 6th grade education. While the Tea Party will certainly continue to contribute to the political stage for sheer entertainment value as its revered candidates misquote other politicians, misunderstand policy and the rul of law of the Consitution, and misremember American History, no one is particularly worried about this party doing anything more meaningful than winning a minor seat here and there for one term, until those who voted for the candidate realize what an idiot he or she is. Though it is Tea Party best practice to say something as if it's true, and then clicking magic heels together hoping to have it come to pass, things like Bachman getting anywhere near the Republican candidacy for presidency are sheer folly. She clearly needs to up her meds, as do her followers need to up theirs, if any of them think this has a chance.

    July 24, 2011 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  5. Former Republican, now an Independent

    It is a rare occasion when I can agree with much of anything Michelle Bachmann says, but she is right on in her assessment of Tim Pawlenty. He used the state of Minnesota's money to travel all over the country for 2 years setting up a campaign for president and left the state in a financial mess. Running states and the U.S. into financial trouble has become the norm for the republican party since the Reagan years and their policies have definately proven to be the wrong path for America.

    July 24, 2011 09:23 pm at 9:23 pm |
  6. GaryB

    It's easy for Bachmann to take pock-shots at Pawlenty, because he actually had to govern and he has a record to stand upon. Michelle Bachmann, on the other hand, has one of the worst voting attendance records in the house. On top of that, her family business needs government assistance to survive, so she doesn't even have business cred. As a community organizer, Obama at least had experience in organizing people to do something. Bachmann's main experience consists of organizing her congressional staff, and according to many of her former staff members she wasn;t any good at that. She's a classicv example of failing upward, which puts her on a par with the various executives in the financial industry (almost all uniformly Republcan) who took our country to the brink of financial collapse in 2008 and are still slowiing the recovery today.

    July 24, 2011 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  7. CC

    The picture she paints is always a different color then discribed... research her motherhood as a foster parent, its not quite as described, her quote that African Americans were better off during slavery–not only not quite as described but blatantly insane, and incorrect... her husbands clinic, which she has an interest in–healing gay folks, for real...and she gets paid via the government that she speaks against, why does she take the money... oh, thats right... not as described. And what about those headaches that her staff has witnessed, and she says are no big deal... again, not as described. So in basic terms, nothing being what it appears to be, she is another lipstick wearing... you paint the picture!

    July 24, 2011 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  8. smc

    Pawlenty is bickering with Bachmann? If he thinks she's worth the time, then he isn't a credible candidate either.

    July 24, 2011 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  9. The Unsub

    Never "Bock Man" ever!

    July 24, 2011 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  10. CBR

    Ms. Bachmann may be right in her views or she may be wrong. That is a debate issue and not one we can answer. She has unhappy constituents, too. The Bachmann-Pawlenty disagreement is nothing more than an attempt to have only one candidate from Minnesota. However, both of these candidates will wind up slamming each other and then only one will be left to run for president. Clearly Ms. Bachmann does not like criticism and is not really open about the gay rights issue among others.

    July 24, 2011 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  11. Ghost Rider

    Same old mud slinging rhetoric from the same old backwards thinking ideas. Except now the rhetoric is coming from certifiable nit wits. This is exactly why intelligent people are too smart to run for public office.
    Better watch it Backmann, you're starting to look and sound more like Palin everyday.

    July 24, 2011 09:50 pm at 9:50 pm |
  12. CedarRapids

    That she has a shot with republican voters hardly equates to a shot at the presidental spot Derek, it says more about the repuiblican voters than the public at large. And a caricature is an exagerated version of a person, she doesnt need anything exagerated to fit the bill.

    July 24, 2011 09:53 pm at 9:53 pm |
  13. jim

    given bachmann's truthfulness record, i'll have to take another look at pawlenty.

    July 24, 2011 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  14. ja

    duh, Obama is the president, she is liked to Hitler, stealing funds under sexual orientation change, hogwash

    July 24, 2011 09:55 pm at 9:55 pm |
  15. Bill

    TARP was Bush 43 – these moron republicans seem to forget that- wake up losers, this was your choice, dont blame something else one someone else. 2 wars TRILLIONS spent, and these clowns STILL refuse to say the words Defense Budget. Enough is enough. Stop the welfare to Big Oil and defense contractors, then talk about taking things away from hard working Americans. I dont think it will happen when these morons are in the pockets of big business

    July 24, 2011 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  16. Bill

    and another thing....Michelle Bachmann is the Anita Bryant of 2011

    July 24, 2011 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  17. "He's Dead Jim."

    Bachmann has it in common with the dems and pubs, they are all like vacuums.

    July 24, 2011 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  18. V.J.Kaul

    Bachmann as President of US. Even the thought is scary. You can't compare Obama to Bachmann – She can't carry his bag, She has these old ideas about the world and handling of the economy. If she was against BiG govt. why did she and her husband take money from the govt. She does not even deserve to be a congresswoman.
    Regarding the deficits..They were due to tax give aways to the rich and two wars. All thanks to REPUBLICAN president Bush.
    Chris Mathews supports her becaise he knows Obama will clean her clock in the election. Don't be so naive and slow not to understand his thinking.

    July 24, 2011 10:05 pm at 10:05 pm |
  19. The Daniel Group

    Can't we find better leaders than Michelle Bachmann.

    July 24, 2011 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  20. EddyL

    And what did Bachmann actually DO other than shoot off her big mouth? Nothing. She had a migraine that day.

    July 24, 2011 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  21. America Shrugged

    Bachmann has done nothing but vote against Obama from day one, anyone can do that...She hasn't written one piece of legislation that has passed through the house. It's interesting to see these two at each others throats..Makes you wonder what's up with that.

    July 24, 2011 10:16 pm at 10:16 pm |
  22. Paul/Ventura2012

    I suppose the $2.3 TRILLION that Rumsfeld announced the Pentagon "couldn't account for" and the TRILLIONS spent on baseless and illegal wars is GOP fiscal responsibility? NOT.

    July 24, 2011 10:19 pm at 10:19 pm |
  23. Jonathan

    Bachmann is such a hypocrite. She says she wants to reduce government...

    "Executive experience is not an asset if it simply means bigger government and more intrusive government," Bachmann wrote...

    Less intrusive government she says. I'm okay with less spending and smaller bureaucracy but then she wants to outlaw abortion in any case imaginable and wants to outlaw rights for gays....what she means is "less taxes and less intrusion into your life as long as you're a white, christian, natural born US citizen."

    July 24, 2011 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  24. BeverlyNC

    Bachmann shouldn't be criticizing anyone's record for she HAS NONE. Bachmann has NEVER been part of or created a single piece of legislation in all the time she has been in Congress. She is worthless and a do-nothing Congresswoman. She just spews her lunatic thoughts and takes up space in Congress. Wake up MN and don't send this brainless idiiot back to Congress. She rails against the government yet takes home a 6 figure salary, gets free healthcare that is the best avalilable plan there is and a pension for life for DOING NOTHING....but she wants to take everything away from you.
    You support her why???? She doesn't care about you or your life situation. She will keep getting her salary , her healthcare, and her pension while she and the Republicans destroy the stock market, our economy, and wipe out your retirement plan investments, while your credit card rates go up, while retail prices on food, gas, etc go up. Republicans will destroy YOUR life just so corporations can keep their billions in govt subsidies, tax loopholes, and paying ZERO taxes.
    Republicans HATE the PEOPLE and do not care what their political games do to your life. Republicans work for the CORPORATIONS.

    July 24, 2011 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  25. The Obama Recession Continues Unabated, Obama Depression on the way

    I like Bachmann. She's got guts and stands up for herself and her beliefs. If I was in a fox hole and could choose between Bachmann, Pawlenty and Obama who to be with me in a fight, I'd chose to be with Bachmann. I'd be too worried about timid Timmy throwing up his white T-shirt and simply Obama running away. There is never much doubt about where she stands as opposed to our I-vote-Present President that believes one can "lead from behind" (aka I-am-a-coward).

    July 24, 2011 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
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