Bachmann: I don’t compromise my principles
August 14th, 2011
09:40 AM ET
7 years ago

Bachmann: I don’t compromise my principles

(CNN) – Fresh off a win at the Iowa straw poll, Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann stood by her principles Sunday, saying in an interview with CNN’s “State of the Union” that she won’t compromise her values on “big issues.”

Facing criticism that tea party members resisted compromise to reach an agreement on the debt ceiling, the Republican presidential candidate was asked to identify legislation that represented a compromise between herself and lawmakers of an opposing or alternate view. “I stand on a core set of principles but you want to continue to move in a positive direction,” Bachmann told Chief Political Correspondent Candy Crowley. “I’ve done that throughout my legislative career.”

“On big issues, I don’t compromise my core sets of principles.”

And in her experience, the public doesn’t favor a compromise between spending cuts and raising revenue through tax increases as a method of battling the deficit.

“I haven’t gone one place in Iowa or South Carolina or New Hampshire where anyone said, ‘Please raise my taxes,’” she argued. “Never happened.”

“People are not saying yes, raise the debt ceiling, we want you to borrow more money - it doesn’t happen…people are very upset and nervous about where the economy’s at right now.”

And for Bachmann, a win at the straw poll in Ames, a contest that measures candidate strength and organization in Iowa, also communicated a bigger message.

“People sent a message to President Obama. They said, ‘We are done with your policies, we want something very different.’”

Bachmann believes that the 2012 election will be an “economic selection,” in which she will fare well because “people want to know who can turn the country around.”

“People want job creation,” she stated. “They want the economy to turn around and [they want to] work. I have that background.”

And if she reaches the White House, Bachmann said she would revisit the policy that prevented gay service members from openly serving in the military known as “don’t ask, don’t tell.”

“The ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ policy has worked very well,” she said. “I would be in consultation with our commanders but yes, I probably will [reinstate the policy].”

Though she hasn’t yet decided whether to end the gas tax when it expires in September, Bachmann did say that on the matter of gay marriage she thought it imperative that judges refrain from “legislating from the bench.”

“I think it’s more important that people have a right to weigh in on the laws that they choose to live under,” she asserted. “That was the problem here in Iowa.”

Watch State of the Union with Candy Crowley Sundays at 9am ET. For the latest from State of the Union click here.

Filed under: 2012 • Content Partner • Iowa • Michele Bachmann • TV-State of the Union
soundoff (425 Responses)
  1. Freeman

    I'm wondering if she did win the Presidency (heaven forbid) who would really be running the country. Her or that husband of hers since she is a submissive wife and does whatever he wants her to do.

    August 14, 2011 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  2. KatR

    212 comments on this article. and not one of them supports Bachman's nutcase remarks. Don't think we have to worry about her making it to the WH.

    August 14, 2011 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  3. TheMostWise

    There is a certain character in the "Wizard of Oz who is made of 'straw' and is traveling with Dorothy, the tin man, and the lion to Oz to see if the wizard can help them with their particular 'deficiency'. The winner of this 'straw poll' just so happens to suffer from precisely the same 'deficiency' as the character made of straw. With Iowa being somewhat close to Kansas, isn't it the damnest come-off that the candidate with the 'straw character deficiency' would win the 'straw poll'.

    August 14, 2011 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  4. Chris

    Haven't we all had enough of this refusing to compromise? Isn't that the biggest problem we have? I mean, that's what politicians do - they compromise. That's what they're SUPPOSED to do, anyway - deal with the issues on which people DISAGREE, and reach an agreement everyone can live with. That is, unless voters are just tired of this whole democracy thing, and want to start killing off the "other side".

    I am also fed up with politicians - especially social conservatives - who are so certain they are "right". It has been my lifelong experience that the only people who are sure they are right are those whom I am sure are wrong.

    August 14, 2011 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  5. Corolannus

    Most of the previous comments say it all...the winner of the "Ames Straw Poll" is not qualified to be president. But then, the current president is also not qualified to be president. I fear that the political war of the coming year will present voters with a real dilemma...neither major party candidate is qualified. Then this country will be stuck with another four years, at least, of no compromise and necessary leadership on the really tough decisions that must be made to save the economy and the country.

    August 14, 2011 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  6. jkINC

    Then she doesn't believe in our representative democracy of which compromise is a basic requirement. She must be running for dictator.

    August 14, 2011 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  7. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    Not to renew the gasoline tax is foolish. How would she propose to keep the interstate highway system paved and useable? She is so far from her comments from 2008 that stressed being bipartisan. She has brought crazy to the main stream.

    August 14, 2011 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  8. J Sledge

    If she is elected President and there is not a super majority of Republicans in the House and Senate we get to see gridlock again...Compromise is not a dirty word

    August 14, 2011 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  9. Wildpuck

    It is interesting all of the comments refer to her to not compromising. What she actually said was..."on big issues, I don't compromise my core set of principles." Hmm..someone with principles...what a novel concept to the left. When the left gets scared, the name calling and out right insults come out in full force. How about just disagreeing with someone instead of all of the demeaning name calling. Grow up.

    August 14, 2011 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  10. raven

    Actually, the most recent polls, taken right after the debt ceiling fight, showed a majority, regardless of party, favor REVENUE INCREASES along with spending cuts to reduce the deficit, place most of the blame for the crisis on the GOP (77%), trust Obama and the Democrats to do the right thing for the economy (47% vs the 33% who trust Congressional Republicans), 43% feel the Tea Party has too much influence on the GOP (40% of Independents shared that view) and 40% have an unfavorable view of the Tea Party. Obama's approval rating, at the time of the poll, was 48%. Boehner's was 30%. Bachmann does not represent a majority of REPUBLICANS, much less say a majority of Americans. Her recent flub when asked "from whom?" (she wanted to "take our country back" from) was closer to the truth than most of what she says: "Well, from the people all over this country." LOL. And NOT so funny is that her slogan ("Take our country back") was also the motto of the Norway terrorist (whose positions on a number of "issues" she and other right-wing extremists in the U.S. SHARE!)

    August 14, 2011 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  11. Cliff Vegas

    Thanks for the guidance, Michele. I won't compromise either. I will not vote for a single Republican – ever again.

    August 14, 2011 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  12. chad

    Bachmann represents the side that offers absurd solutions whereas the President represents the side that is too scared to offer any. Do you want a crazy, self-destructive leader or a weak leader? These are the two choices in our great democracy.

    August 14, 2011 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  13. Bob Ramos

    “On big issues, I don’t compromise my core sets of principles.”

    Exactly why she cannot be President. Except in extreme rare cases, all important legislation was the result of compromise.

    In the case of taxes, while I personally do not want higher taxes, it may be needed sometime in the future where a President might need to be in favor of higher taxes. She rules herself out of contention when she says she would fight higher taxes.

    August 14, 2011 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  14. Carl

    Iowa is for crazies! Let their choice of politicians run the country and you will see a country become a wasteland. Only the rich will survive.

    August 14, 2011 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  15. Marjee123

    OH YEAH like her principals. She is against the EPA. That's after she writes a letter requesting millions for one of her projects. She is against government lending for mortegates that's after she negoitated a million dollar from Fannie Mae and Freedie Mac to buy her home. And I could go on and on 16 different times she wrote the government for money for projects and for her own benefit. BUT she doesn't comprise her principals. Got that.

    August 14, 2011 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  16. Lisa

    It's too bad this crazy woman is even being seriously considered by some people. She wants to lower the deficit and cut spending but the tax-payer funded military just spent millions to implement the repeal of DADT but she would like to undo all of that and spend millions more to put things back to the way they were. Her biggest accomplishment as a congressperson was to write a bill about light bulb choice. All of the factories are already re-tooling to start making LCD's full-time and dropping the incandescent bulb. But gee, let's just go backward. She doesn't like big govt. telling us all what to do but she wants to impose her values on everyone.. If she is going to submit to her husband then he needs to be involved in some of these debates so we know what he plans to tell her to do. Also we need a few words from God so we know what he plans for her also. As President she is required to serve every person in this diverse nation and not exclude all gay people and anyone who is not an Evangelical Christian. Can't see her getting elected but her crazy talk should at least show the other Republicans what not to say.

    August 14, 2011 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  17. troy

    To me, a lack of compromise means you want things only one way; your way. A government leader who wants things only one way, their way, is a dictator, and will put this country in jeopardy. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

    Also, other than being too nice and charitable, exactly what has Obama really done that's so bad? Presidents can't end recessions, and they cannot create jobs by themselves. The debt was already present when he got into office, and yes, he added to it, but it wasn't frivolous spending. It was spending for the betterment of the country.

    So, as an Independent who doesn't subscribe to fringe rhetoric and talk radio rehashed mantras, what exactly has Obama done that has been so terrible...and that a Republican can fix? Bachmann is too rigid and only represents a fringe element. Romney's Health Care is the same as Obama's. Perry is for open borders, he's flipped flopped on several issues, and the jobs he created are temporary, low level jobs that immigrants tend to seek.

    So again, what rationale do I have to NOTvote for Obama? I'm not rigid, bigoted, nor anti-anything just to be a part of a bigger sect. And remember, I don't subscribe to fringe (Liberal, Conservative, Tea Party) mantras. Bottom line, I need concrete evidence to vote against Obama, and I just don't have it.

    I just don't see it.

    August 14, 2011 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  18. Steve

    "...only the rich will survive." I think that's the Koch brothers' plan.

    August 14, 2011 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  19. tffl

    Well, whatever else she is, she's certainly a politician – she never answered a single one of the questions she was asked. She spewed a lot of generalities, a lot of "I'll fix things, whatever they are", and a lot of "the way things are is bad, so I won't do that", but she never directly answered anything and she never made a single specific statement.

    August 14, 2011 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  20. TwoPerCent

    Bachmann, no one is asking you to compromise your values. We are just asking that you not FORCE yours upon us.

    August 14, 2011 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  21. sam9962

    ..."I don't compromise my principles"... I'm sorry Bachmann there's no place for that in Washington/Congress anymore!!! Look where it got us. People.... this bickering between parties is going to cause the deeper destruction of our great nation. No matter who the country votes in as President in 2012, if you place every obstacle in front of them to lead, they will be ineffective. Just as what is so evident to our President. A Big Bold Plan to get our country back on solid ground is needed and NOTHING is off the table. There's short term deficit and long term needs, revenue increases, entitlement reforms....whatever it takes to jump start this economy. It needs to happen now, not later and yes republicans if it happens now that will help President Obama. Time is not on your side. You the country cannot afford to wait until after the election to see republicans compromise in a meaningful way to benefit the PEOPLE not themselves or to defeat the President. If you block with opposition to the president's call for JOB PROGRAMS the country will see who is clearly clogging up this drain. We MUST allow all possible solutions to be acted on NOW to get people back to work that includes stimulative measures ...yeah that's right stimulative programs like creating infrastructure jobs. CUTTING alone won't grow you an extra arm or leg. People listen to the opinions of the educated economists not the news commentators. They're just throwing mud on the windshield so no one can see the true issues clearly. BTW CNN is fair. The others...great for side only! God Bless America!

    August 14, 2011 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  22. Grow up already...

    Oh those Iowans... What a dry sense of humor!!!

    August 14, 2011 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  23. roccyraccoon

    She wants to be president of the United States of America and she"does not compromise". Are you serious Michelle? Has politics gotten so bad that you have forgotten that compromise is the ONLY way things get done in Washington? I just have to shake my head and say how sad things have become. Remember this folks, when the elections come next year. Do you really want a to vote for a person who will not compromise, has lied about raising 23 kids, and who wants to make the rich that much richer through more tax cuts for the fat cats? come on – we can't be that stupid.....

    August 14, 2011 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  24. nobama

    Crazy is 9.1% unemployment. Crazy is calling last summer the Summer of Recovery. Crazy is wasting billions of dollars on a failed "stimulus" plan. Crazy is bombing Libya and ignoring Syria. Crazy was electing this President because he reads a teleprompter well. Don't be fooled again America! I think the President will make an excellent community organizer again next year.

    August 14, 2011 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  25. Another

    She would make a good commander on her own island. If the percentage of this country actually would make her POTUS, I will do everything I can to become a Canadian Citizen.

    August 14, 2011 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
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