May 29th, 2013
07:45 AM ET
2 years ago

Rep. Bachmann looks forward to 'limitless' future, but not in the House

Updated Wednesday 5/29 at 10:30 a.m. ET

(CNN) - U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, a conservative firebrand whose bid for president last year ended after the Iowa caucuses, will not seek re-election to her Minnesota congressional seat in 2014.

Making her announcement in a video posted to her campaign website early Wednesday, Bachmann stressed she had no plans to fade from public view.

"Looking forward, after the completion of my term, my future is full, it is limitless, and my passions for America will remain," she announced.

Bachmann, who's in her fourth term representing Minnesota's 6th District, promised that there "is no future option or opportunity" that she "won't be giving serious consideration if it can help save and protect our great nation for future generations."

Bachmann staved off a tougher-than-expected challenge for her seat last November against Democrat Jim Graves, winning re-election by just under 5,000 votes. Graves has announced he will seek the seat again in 2014.

In her video announcement, Bachmann said her decision was not influenced by any concerns about winning reelection.

"I've always, in the past, defeated candidates who were capable, qualified, and well-funded. And I have every confidence that if I ran, I would again defeat the individual who I defeated last year, who recently announced that he is once again running," Bachmann said.

Nor was her decision based on any concerns over an ongoing congressional ethics inquiry into the improper transfer of campaign funds, Bachmann said in her video. She is also facing a Federal Election Commission complaint about her former presidential campaign.

"This decision was not impacted in any way by the recent inquiries into the activities of my former presidential campaign or my former presidential staff," she said. "It was clearly understood that compliance with all rules and regulations was an absolute necessity for my presidential campaign. And I have no reason to believe that that was not the case."

Bachmann's run for president in 2012 reached its peak in August 2011, when she beat out a slate of other candidates to win the Ames Straw Poll in the early voting state of Iowa, where she was born. Her campaign lost steam in the fall to other conservative candidates like Rick Perry, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum, and she eventually placed sixth in the first-in-the-nation Iowa caucuses. She ended her presidential bid the next day.

In the eight-minute long video, Bachmann, an early supporter of the Tea Party movement, touted her work on a variety of conservative issues, promising to "to work vehemently and robustly to fight back against what most in the other party want to do to transform our country into becoming, which would be a nation that our founders would hardly even recognize today."

Bachmann was one of the leading supporters of the emerging tea party movement in 2010, founding the "tea party caucus" in the House of Representatives and delivering her own "tea party response" to President Barack Obama's State of the Union address. Most recently she organized a tea party rally on Capitol Hill protesting the Internal Revenue Service's admitted targeting of conservative groups applying for tax exempt status.

In her video, she said she wouldn't let up on the causes she championed as a U.S. representative.

"I promise you I have and I will continue to fight to protect innocent human life, traditional marriage, family values, religious liberty, and academic excellence," Bachmann said.

In a polite statement, National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Rep. Greg Walden wrote Bachmann "has been a tireless advocate and dedicated Representative for the people of Minnesota’s Sixth District."

"Michele was the first Republican woman elected to represent Minnesota in the U.S. House of Representatives, and she has worked hard each day to ensure that her constituents’ voices are heard in the halls of Congress," he continued.

Democrats were less laudatory - the House Majority PAC, which works to elect Democrats to Congress, wrote Bachmann's decision was "good news for the people of Minnesota and our nation."

"Bachmann voluntarily removing herself from Congress is a victory we can all celebrate today," the group's executive director Alixandria Lapp wrote.

CNN's Kevin Liptak and Martina Stewart contributed to this report.


Filed under: 2014 • Michele Bachmann
soundoff (885 Responses)
  1. John

    Much more lucrative to cash in on all the dummies that will pay big bucks to listen to her speak. Just ask Sarah.

    May 29, 2013 08:48 am at 8:48 am |
  2. Ron in SC

    She got her lifetime salary and benefits and did nothing...why not?

    May 29, 2013 08:48 am at 8:48 am |
  3. John Stockton

    Nice news to wake up to this morning. It's gonna' be a good day.

    May 29, 2013 08:49 am at 8:49 am |
  4. Martin Wiescholek

    She will protect "religious liberties" as in only the liberties of her belief not the ones that belief anything slightly different.

    Good grief....I am relieved to see one clown less at the Congressional Circus. With luck there will be more to follow. Lets hope we can get Rand Paul's red nose removed too.

    May 29, 2013 08:49 am at 8:49 am |
  5. George

    Best news I've heard all year. I wish Ms. Bachmann a life of deserved obscurity. I hope she and Sarah Palin will be happy in the land of the long forgotten.

    May 29, 2013 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  6. BillyD

    All I can really say is...YAY! Don't let the door hit you on the way out!

    May 29, 2013 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  7. BIG GOVERNMENT REPUBLICANS

    That's what illegal campaign finance activity will do to your career. lol

    May 29, 2013 08:51 am at 8:51 am |
  8. Mark

    I have not always agreed with Bachmann (to put it lightly) – but whenever a voice of opposition or dissent leaves, I hope its replaced by a similar voice.

    May 29, 2013 08:51 am at 8:51 am |
  9. Hurraaaay

    This is a great day for America. No more of that crazy woman in Congress.

    May 29, 2013 08:52 am at 8:52 am |
  10. pmmarion

    She got what she wanted. Her pension will kick in when she turns 62. lol

    May 29, 2013 08:52 am at 8:52 am |
  11. Doobie

    Good riddance ....

    May 29, 2013 08:52 am at 8:52 am |
  12. Marlene Cox

    YEAH!!! THE BEST NEWS OF THE DAY! Hopefully, she will be replaced with a INTELLIGENT, reasonable, honest Statesman.

    May 29, 2013 08:53 am at 8:53 am |
  13. WeDontMatter

    I'm not even a resident of that state and I don't see how my day could get any better after this news. Hey, Michele, bye.

    May 29, 2013 08:54 am at 8:54 am |
  14. Jim g

    Who is she? : )

    May 29, 2013 08:54 am at 8:54 am |
  15. USAF Vet

    Just made my day! I was always embarassed to say I was born in Minnesota because of her wacky views! Bye and good riddance!

    May 29, 2013 08:55 am at 8:55 am |
  16. Chuk

    Wow she finally sees the light: she would have been beaten by the Democrat next year if she hung around. The fact is, she, as well as her fellow tea partiers, are fading. These groups seem to have life once there are issues like unemployment, etc. As things continue to look up for the country, I expect these fringe groups to fade. Inevitable.

    May 29, 2013 08:55 am at 8:55 am |
  17. Puddin

    Some good news for a change. I could never understand how she ever got elected in the first place, and her run for the presidency was surely done as a joke.

    May 29, 2013 08:56 am at 8:56 am |
  18. jw

    what no more crazy eyes??....just when you would think the tea party would be gaining strength will all the IRS and she bows out??.....turn out the lights the tea party is over

    May 29, 2013 08:56 am at 8:56 am |
  19. That's just crazy talk

    This is a great day for America

    May 29, 2013 08:57 am at 8:57 am |
  20. Martha

    This is WONDERFUL news!

    May 29, 2013 08:57 am at 8:57 am |
  21. Thank Gawd

    Thank Gawd she isn't running again. Sadly though, she won't stop running off at the mouth. Has to be about the most irritating voice!
    Look up the word "dim wit" in the dictionary and there she is!

    May 29, 2013 08:57 am at 8:57 am |
  22. eric rasmussen

    It is SCARY as hell someone this crazy could even get enough support to even win a mayoral election in a small town...much less get funding to run for president. She won't have any problem with her funny money dealings anymore than good ol Sarah did.....things go better with Kochs!

    May 29, 2013 08:58 am at 8:58 am |
  23. Ken Barr

    I have a suggestion. Join the military and do something meaningful and constructive for the country.

    May 29, 2013 08:59 am at 8:59 am |
  24. coflyboy

    Great News for America! Bachmann surpassed even Palin and Bugs Bunny in Looney Tunes antics. How she managed to get a single vote from Minnesotans is far beyond comprehension.

    May 29, 2013 09:01 am at 9:01 am |
  25. BCW

    Finally, she does something good for the Americans. Bye Bye Bachmann.

    May 29, 2013 09:01 am at 9:01 am |
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