Bachmann's Response to State of the Union
January 25th, 2011
10:10 PM ET
10 years ago

Bachmann's Response to State of the Union

As prepared for delivery:

Good evening, my name is Congresswoman Michele Bachmann from Minnesota’s 6th District.

Two years ago, when Barack Obama became our President, unemployment was 7.8 percent and our national debt stood at what seemed like a staggering $10.6 trillion dollars.

We wondered whether the President would cut spending, reduce the deficit and implement real job-creating policies.

Unfortunately, the President’s strategy for recovery was to spend a trillion dollars on a failed stimulus program, fueled by borrowed money.

The White House promised us that all the spending would keep unemployment under 8 percent.

Not only did that plan fail to deliver, but within three months the national jobless rate spiked to 9.4 percent. And sadly, it hasn’t been lower for 20 straight months. While the government grew, we lost more than 2 million jobs.

Let me show you a chart. [CHART]

Here are unemployment rates over the past ten years. In October 2001, our national unemployment rate was at 5.3 percent. In 2008 it was at 6.6 percent. But, just eight months after President Obama promised lower unemployment, that rate spiked to a staggering 10.1 percent.

Today, unemployment is at 9.4 percent with about 400,000 new claims every week.

After the $700 billion bailout, the trillion-dollar stimulus, and the $410 billion spending bill with over 9,000 earmarks, many of you implored Washington to please stop spending money we don’t have.

But, instead of cutting, we saw an unprecedented explosion of government spending and debt, unlike anything we have seen in the history of our country.


Deficits were unacceptably high under President Bush, but they exploded under President Obama’s direction, growing the national debt by an astounding $3.1 trillion-dollars.

What did we buy?

Instead of a leaner, smarter government, we bought a bureaucracy that tells us which light bulbs to buy, and which will put 16,500 IRS agents in charge of policing President Obama’s healthcare bill.

ObamaCare mandates and penalties will force many job creators to stop offering health insurance altogether, unless yours is one of the more-than-222 privileged companies or unions that has received a government waiver.

In the end, unless we fully repeal ObamaCare, a nation that currently enjoys the world’s best healthcare may be forced to rely on government-run coverage that will have a devastating impact on our national debt for generations to come.

For two years President Obama made promises just like the ones we heard him make tonight. Yet still we have high unemployment, devalued housing prices and the cost of gasoline is skyrocketing.

Here are a few suggestions for fixing our economy:

The President could stop the EPA from imposing a job-destroying cap-and-trade system.

The President could support a Balanced Budget Amendment.

The President could agree to an energy policy that increases American energy production and reduces our dependence on foreign oil.

The President could also turn back some of the 132 regulations put in place in the last two years, many of which will cost our economy $100 million or more.

And, the President should repeal ObamaCare and support free market solutions like medical malpractice reform and allow all Americans to buy any healthcare policy they like anywhere in the United States.

We need to start making things again in this country, and we can do that by reducing the tax and regulatory burdens on job creators.

America will have the highest corporate tax rate in the world. Look no further to see why jobs are moving overseas.

But, thanks to you, there’s reason to hope that real spending cuts are coming. Last November you went to the polls and voted out big-spending politicians and you put in their place men and women with a commitment to follow the Constitution and cut the size of government.

I believe that we are in the early days of a history-making turn.

Please know how important your calls, visits, and letters are to the maintenance of our liberties. Because of you, Congress responded and we are starting to undo the damage that’s been done.

We believe in lower taxes, a limited view of government and the exceptionalism of America. And I believe America is the indispensible nation.

Just the creation of this nation was a miracle. Who’s to say that we can’t see a miracle again?

The perilous battle that was fought in the pacific, at Iwo Jima, was a battle against all odds, and yet the image of the young G.I.s in the incursion against the Japanese immortalizes their victory. These six young men raising the flag came to symbolize all of America coming together to beat back a totalitarian aggressor.

Our current debt crisis we face today is different, but we still need all of us to pull together. We can do this.

And that’s the hope we hold tonight as Americans. We will push forward to reclaim the greatness of our country and to proclaim the liberty upon which we were founded.

And we will do so because we the people will never give up on this great nation.

God bless you, and God bless America.

Filed under: SOTU 2011
soundoff (150 Responses)
  1. MadHatter

    Dumb broad....the unemployment jumped cause the economy crashed, and the deficit jumped cause of all of the spending to help fix GREEDY BILLIONAIRES MESSUPS....I liked where Obama was going with the State of the Union, but lets just see if it will happen...and see if this Bi-Partisanship will go through...I don't put it past money hungry republicans to do everything in their power to keep tax cuts for the rich...CAUSE THEY ARE THE RICH....LEVEL THE PLAYING FIELD!!!

    January 25, 2011 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm |
  2. john

    and the deficit chart fails to account for the hundreds of billions of dollars every year that bush called supplementals so they wouldn't be counted in the budget deficit. the actual deficit in dollars under bush were close to double what the official numbers were because of the way the dollars are counted. obama counts every dollar spent as part of the budget now. that's the real change. it doesn't matter. most people aren't too bright and won't notice so i guess she wins.

    January 25, 2011 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm |
  3. buv

    It's pretty obvious that CNN intentionally let Michele look at the wrong camera the entire time so she would look disconnected from her audiance. Instead, it just made the director look stupid! The director should be religated to sweeping the floor.

    January 25, 2011 11:47 pm at 11:47 pm |
  4. Sharon

    Too bad she could not look into the camera. I wondered if she even knew who she was talking to. Most likely to herself in the mirror. She should study her history a bit, she may learn something.

    January 25, 2011 11:49 pm at 11:49 pm |
  5. Mary

    I would like to know why CNN camera people gave Michele improper camera ques? Between you and Fox, you made her look like an idiot. I am not only complaining to you but I will complain to FOX also. I thought news stations were to report the news, be objective and impartial. What a blantant attempt on both networks to discredit an American Congresswomen for what ever games you play to save your sorry jobs.

    January 25, 2011 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  6. David c.

    How about a Constitutional Amendment requiring congresspersons to be literate in the history of our country? Kind of like a reading test to vote:)

    January 25, 2011 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  7. Strangebrew

    Im in the process of loosing my house, the value has dropped over 30% in the past few years, My standard of living isnt improving, I have had to cut back to make ends meet. My taxes continue to raise and so does my energy costs. All i hear about are more government programs to make things better. I think that I like the speach made 50 years ago by another Democrat..."Ask not what your Country can do for you..." and I wonder where the Democrats went that supported that idea

    January 25, 2011 11:58 pm at 11:58 pm |
  8. Calvin Hobbes

    God Bless Michele Bachmann.

    January 25, 2011 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  9. ThinkAgain

    "Deficits were unacceptably high under President Bush, but they exploded under President Obama’s direction, growing the national debt by an astounding $3.1 trillion-dollars."

    That's because President Obama put the real cost of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars ON THE BOOKS! Unlike Bush, who not only lied us into war, he lied about their costs, cut taxes during wartime (unprecedented in our nation's history) and told us that "deficits don't matter."

    President Obama is not only an adult, he treats the American people like we can handle the challenges that are before our country.

    And he has policies that WORK – unlike all of the failure you and your party represent, Bachmann!

    January 25, 2011 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  10. Jimmy

    You go girl!!! New President in 2012!!

    January 26, 2011 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  11. ThinkAgain

    "The President could support a Balanced Budget Amendment."

    This is idiotic! All a balanced budget amendment would do would be to hamstring our government in times of crisis.

    A better solution is what President Obama proposed: cut wasteful spending and let the tax cuts for the wealthy expire.

    It's about time those folks pulled their weight and gave back to the country that gave them the opportunity to make their wealth in the first place!

    January 26, 2011 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  12. Kess

    I hope you run for president Michele, this country needs a true constitutionalist that puts the nation first more than ever.

    January 26, 2011 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  13. shamgar50

    Least we forget.
    "I find it interesting that it was back in the 1970s that the swine flu broke out under another, then under another Democrat president, Jimmy Carter. I'm not blaming this on President Obama, I just think it's an interesting coincidence." -Rep. Michele Bachmann, on the 1976 Swine Flu outbreak that happened when Gerald Ford, a Republican, was president, April 28, 2009
    "Does that mean that someone's 13-year-old daughter could walk into a sex clinic, have a pregnancy test done, be taken away to the local Planned Parenthood abortion clinic, have their abortion, be back and go home on the school bus? That night, mom and dad are never the wiser." -Rep. Michele Bachmann, on health care reform's potential to dupe parents, October 2009

    Like any sane person would listen to anything this nut-case says!

    January 26, 2011 12:02 am at 12:02 am |
  14. William Baney

    I'm all for repealing Obama-care, but you shouldn't just ram that through at this point. You need a viable alternative that you can sell to the American people. Key word is "sell." Why not get the support before ramming through legislation to repeal. Why not show people a better alternative first? Don't stoop to the same level they did when they put Obama-care in place. What sets you apart?

    BTW: Those weren't just "young GI's" that raised the flag over Mount Suribachi in Iwo Jima. They were MARINES!

    January 26, 2011 12:02 am at 12:02 am |
  15. ThinkAgain

    When did she have time to think about what the President said in his State of the Union speech and then write her response? I watch the address on TV, and there she was in the Chamber.

    Oh, that's right! Backmann DIDN'T think, she just pulled out all her over-used catch-phrases to try to bash the President and make her look good in the eyes of her "base."

    January 26, 2011 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  16. Bill Grant

    With a 90 IQ and not a clue about American history – how can she get all this media attention???

    January 26, 2011 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  17. Gentle Critic

    Blah...blah....blah.....Bachmann must be related to Palin. Much like her, Bachmann isn't able to provide a complete thought without implicating others in the failures that she and her party are responsible. No one cares what she has to say and she isn't going any where else in politics. She needs to realize that and be happy she has her current job at the expense of the taxpayers.

    January 26, 2011 12:06 am at 12:06 am |
  18. MMC

    Why they would let this imbecile speak is beyond fathom.God help us.

    January 26, 2011 12:09 am at 12:09 am |
  19. Victor R. Rolando

    Curious that nobody at CNN picked up on GOP Congresswoman Michele Bachmann's Tea Party rebuttal to the President's State of the Union Speech when she refereed to the flag raisers at Mt. Suribachi as "GIs." In fact, the flag raisers were five US Marines and a US Navy Corpsman. I think the Tea Party should spend less time studying the US Constitution and more time studying US History.

    January 26, 2011 12:10 am at 12:10 am |
  20. Paul Ernest Show

    She was more fiction than facts. She forgot or refused to admit we were flat on our bellies when the president took over. She simply lied about gas prices. Gas price was close to $5 in some states, when Bush left office. Bush initiated the bailouts of Wall street, his $150 billion dollars stimulus failed. If everything was fine and rosy, why was Bush stimulating the economy? Miss Backman has lost great credibility by being the face of the Tea party tonight.

    January 26, 2011 12:11 am at 12:11 am |
  21. Chuck Calati

    I believe with you abour American exceptionalism. But as as a 2nd generation Itaian-Irish American, why do you think no health care is a bad idea and why you don't think spending a Trillion $ on wars in Iraq and Afghanistan without payiing for them is a good idea.Pl;ease remember is it was a Republican President who was a 5 star general who said, "Beware of the miliitary industrial complex"

    January 26, 2011 12:14 am at 12:14 am |
  22. David

    Ok, sorry.. but this lady is a wing nut. The deliberate falsehoods and misleading statements are astounding! I can't believe that CNN put her on the air (look up her history on She implies that the 700 bailout, that was passed by Bush, during the Bush administration was Obama's. She states that unemployment shot up during the first 8 months of the Obama administration, but fails to consider that those losses should be attributed to the financial and housing meltdown from the Bush years. Most of his policies hadn't even been implemented yet! But lets not let facts stand in the way of a good tea party speech!

    January 26, 2011 12:21 am at 12:21 am |
  23. Brenda Grosz

    Wow! I'm impressed and happy to have you in office! A true blue blooded American. The current administration needs more thinking like this. This is the greatest nation on the planet, unfortunately poor decision makings bringing her down and that needs to end. May God bless you and give you the courage and wisdom to continue doing the good work you do.

    January 26, 2011 12:27 am at 12:27 am |
  24. Joseph L

    Nominate this woman for president next year. She makes sense and speaks plain English.

    January 26, 2011 12:32 am at 12:32 am |
  25. Dan

    I agree with all she said, however, it wasn't "GIs" who raised the flag on Iwo Jima. It was the MARINES!

    January 26, 2011 12:41 am at 12:41 am |
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