May 29th, 2013
07:45 AM ET
11 months 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. EddiboyS

    Just speculating here but I suspect it's as simple as her polling numbers showing that most of the electorate in her district has become aware of what a whack job she is and that she has become unelectable.

    May 29, 2013 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  2. KSJr.

    Adios and good luck. You'll be doing your country a big favor!!!

    May 29, 2013 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  3. ruemorgue

    The second coming of ... Sarah Palin.

    May 29, 2013 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  4. ABJSQD

    Thank Christ!

    May 29, 2013 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  5. Damich

    Ding dong the witch is gone...which ol' witch...the Bachmann witch...ding dong the wicked witch is gooonnnneee.

    May 29, 2013 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  6. mindstorms1

    I thought everyone in congress was retired.

    May 29, 2013 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  7. Mitch

    I will just add my voice to the majority here – good riddance. One less embarrassment .

    May 29, 2013 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  8. SkyKing169

    What a shame.
    It would be have been an easy seat to gain for the Democrats.

    May 29, 2013 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  9. Lando

    Hibernate forever and ever....amen

    May 29, 2013 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  10. rr

    Sean Hannity better watch out! Bachman is coming and would be qualified to upseat him. Life is good.

    May 29, 2013 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  11. MJT

    Great. Now taxpayers get to pay her health insurance and pension for doing nothing related to public life until she dies. Not that she did before.

    May 29, 2013 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  12. mr big pants

    hopefully she'll spend more time with her "husband" helping him Pray the Gay Away. SO glad this chick is leaving politics – she is ONE DUMB BROAD.

    May 29, 2013 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  13. danielwalldammit

    ...and comedians wept!

    May 29, 2013 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  14. cebundy

    Guess she's going to try to cash-in on her notoriety like Sarah Palin did. Happy to see her out of congress though.

    May 29, 2013 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  15. jay

    may she rest in peace.......more than I can say for what she did to this country.

    May 29, 2013 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  16. Dennis

    Let's hope other extremist uninformed GOP front liners follow suite. It would be nice to have some civil informed problem solving in DC.

    May 29, 2013 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  17. Anonymous

    She knows the Tea Party is toast and the GOP will have to run away from it or RIP GOP.

    May 29, 2013 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  18. FM

    What a relief! This woman isn't only an embarrassment to the people of Minnesota, it's embarrassing to the United States to have someone so gleefully misinformed and so often factually incorrect serve in the House of Representatives. I won't miss her for a minute, not even for comedic purposes.

    May 29, 2013 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  19. BlueDem1

    Good riddance. Bachmann is an embarrassment to Minnesota and the United States as a whole. She is the epitome of the tea party...WILLFULLY IGNORANT.

    May 29, 2013 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  20. markiejoe

    Hallelujah - God is good.

    May 29, 2013 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  21. Jerold

    We will miss her and look forward to her future contributions!

    May 29, 2013 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  22. granny4life

    Every time she opened her mouth it was funnier and scarier than the last. I am not going to miss her, nor I imagine is anyone else with and sense.

    May 29, 2013 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  23. Gordon

    I'm surprised she didn't say, "My husband and I have prayed over this for hours and god said to me directly that I shouldn't run."

    May 29, 2013 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  24. dave_washingtonDC

    thank god...a complete public nightmare for normal republicans...

    May 29, 2013 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  25. marty in MA

    Michelle who??????????

    May 29, 2013 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
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