Webster City, Iowa (CNN) – Saddled with sagging poll numbers, Michele Bachmann is amping up her political rhetoric: describing opponents as "foolish," "flip-floppers" and restating the merits of her candidacy in hypermasculine terms.
"If we want to change this country up…I'm your man," Bachmann said in Webster City, Iowa, on Wednesday. "When people think of the president, they think of who is that individual. And I'm willing to 'man up,' so to speak, for the job and do what needs to be done… I'm a very strong woman."
The Republican presidential candidate has used such language before. But it could take on new meaning when coupled with fresh political attacks from her campaign.
On Tuesday, Bachmann announced the release of a hard-hitting Web ad which strikes at her GOP opponents. Among other things: the video uses old clips of former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney defending abortion rights, reminds viewers that Texas Gov. Rick Perry supports in-state tuition rates for children of illegal immigrants, shows former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Nancy Pelosi together for a "global warming campaign," and swipes at Ron Paul and Herman Cain on foreign policy.
The campaign called the ad "Iowa specific" though anyone can view it on the web and it does not specifically mention anything about Iowa.
At her Wednesday appearance, a reporter asked Bachmann why she was amping up the rhetoric, even naming names?
"So many people, at various stops, have asked us about different candidates - where they stand on issues," Bachmann said. "And so we aren't trying to be personal. We're not trying to be mean. And there's no effort on our part to try to trash the candidates. We're trying to be very factual. And the fact that there are differences between the candidates."
Yet Bachmann continued to throw political elbows.
"What we see from candidates, there's been a lot of flip-flopping and changing and some real questionable action," Bachmann said. She mentioned a candidate designing the blueprint for "Obamacare" - an obvious reference to Romney - said "five of the candidates supported the financial bailout, and said Gingrich was paid to "influence" Republicans for Freddie Mac – a claim Gingrich denies.
Bachmann's criticism also extended to President Barack Obama, a favorite subject of GOP ridicule.
She labeled the president "foolish" for the administration's delay of a final decision on the Keystone oil sands pipeline until 2013.
"Last week the president made a very foolish decision," Bachmann said. "He foolishly kicked the can down the road to say, we're not going to build that pipeline, at least until after his election." The candidate said the decision would cost the U.S. thousands of jobs and valuable oil resources.
The congresswoman also reiterated her opposition to the decision to withdraw all U.S. troops from Iraq by year's end, claiming that it will allow a menacing Iran to grow its influence in Iraq.
"All these Middle Eastern countries - they laugh at us, behind closed doors, for being such knaves and fools," Bachmann said.
The congresswoman continued: "It'll be a very different face with me. That's why it's important - the nominee that we have for this party - and why I need to be the Republican nominee. There's no one in this race that is currently involved in national security and foreign affairs like I am," citing her work on intelligence issues in Congress.
–Follow Shannon Travis on Twitter: @ShanTravisCNN
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The real Bachmann shows up . she doesn't know if she is a man or a female. This funny season is going gang busters this primary season.
Oh really.?.... You my man?...
This loons 15 minutes were up a long long time ago. Good riddance Ms. Bachmann.
Go away crazy lady.
she just doesn't have the smarts to get it! she is never going to be a president. if she looses anymore I.Q. we will have to start watering her.
Man oh man! Its called kicking butts. Clintonian, 'be as nasty as you possible can and after you've become president apologize'. she's pumped indeed, fired up and ready to lead. If this lady becomes the nominee, obama will be spanked in the debates and lost in a landslide. Pure adrenaline. Titanium woman indeed.
The crazy lady from Minnesota has spoken.
She IS the hardest-core conservative in this race. No doubt about it! Agree or disagree, you'll always know where she stands and her voting record backs it up 100%. A lot like Margaret Thatcher!!!!!!!!!!
"If we want to change this country up…I'm your man,"
Well, that explains why Marcus and Michelle are so compatible!
Man, this lady is brutal! She is going for blood AND eating her own!
Not only is she never going to be President, she has ruined her chances of even being picked for vice-president.
Good for her, now she won't be President and no one will ask her to be Vice president. Maybe she just will go away....Please. So tried of her. Tutti Frutti is done.
Who wants to help me make a commercial about Michele denying global warming, saying HPV vaccines's make you retarded, and telling people to pray the gay away. Not that this would hurt her poll numbers, nobody is planning to vote for her anyway.
no way hose'. you are not the stuff that presidents are made of. your time in office is about to expire.
Bachmann on the intelligence committee is pretty scary, other than that go get those liars and flip floppers!! Even a broken clock is right twice a day and Bachmann is having one of those moments now!!!
"...and restating the merits of her candidacy in hypermasculine terms."
Oh, what is this?! Yeah, let's all be macho-macho men! It's totally what all conservative women are into these days!
Gimme a friggin' break, Bachmann.
She needs to take a serious look at herself. Lots of those adjectives she likes to apply to her opponents absolutely apply to her. She is blind to her own weaknesses.
That is right Bachmann! you vote 95% NO for the bills at congress, either good or bad, you always vote NO. Therefore people will vote NO for you for your Presidentiel bid. That's right.
She claims Middle Easterners "laugh at us, behind closed doors, for being such knaves and fools." Maybe, maybe not. But here in the US people laugh at her out in the open! Man up to that, Ms. Bachmann.
Thank you anyway, Michelle- that's very nice of you- but I think I'll pass.
Poor Girl.....she is crazy and doesn't even know it!
shew wee i smell something rotting,,,,oh it you michelle,,,,go clean that up,,,you are nasty
Well she's the "man" in her household.
"...they laugh at us, behind closed doors, for being such knaves and fools," Bachmann said.
Described herself perfectly, didn't she? Although, she left out 'delusional' and 'grasping at bendy straws'.
For some reason this title and article makes me want to turn off politics and listen to Leonard Cohen.
To me, she always sounded desprite. What can she really offer? When has the last time a sitting member of the House ever been elected president? I think it has been quite a few decades. I don't know if she really understand the full impact of some of the proposals she has. I think Bachmann wants to cuts things without understand what they do; much like the MTP interview Tim Russert had with Ron Paul. He didn't know how much the IRS takes in and yet he wanted (still does I guess) to dissolve it.