Bachmann delivers Tea Party response to State of the Union
January 26th, 2011
12:25 AM ET
11 years ago

Bachmann delivers Tea Party response to State of the Union

Washington (CNN) – Minnesota Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann, chair of the Tea Party Caucus in Congress, delivered a Tea Party-style, red-meat conservative rebuttal sharply criticizing President Barack Obama's State of the Union Tuesday.

Bachmann's remarks followed the official Republican response to the president by Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan, but the Minnesota Republican told CNN after the address that the Tea Party Express invited her to give a response the State of the Union last month, and denied that her response was meant to compete with Ryan's.

"Unfortunately, this last weekend, the media decided to create a fiction to make it look like we were in competition with one another. We aren't at all," Bachmann said. "Actually what's happened is, in the last election, we saw that the Tea Party supported many Republican candidates. And we had a very large coalition. So the Tea Party and the Republican Party have actually worked together in many different occasions. Although the Tea Party is neither Republican or Democrat, they came alongside the Republicans in the last election."

The speech was aimed at issues dear to the hearts of Tea Party activists including government spending, the economy and the health care reform law signed by Obama. Armed with charts tracking the national debt and unemployment, Bachmann blasted Obama for adding $3.1 trillion to the national debt, a figure critics would argue is the result of efforts to prop up the economy.

"Unfortunately, the President's strategy for recovery was to spend a trillion dollars on a failed stimulus program, fueled by borrowed money," she said, pointing to a national unemployment rate that continued rising through the president's first two years in office.

"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," Bachmann said.

She focused on the health care reform law that she continually referred to as "Obamacare."

"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," Bachmann said.

According to Bachmann, the Obama administration's economic policies are so bad that a miracle is needed to turn the situation around. She then added that "the creation of this nation was a miracle." She equated the famous Marine assault on Iwo Jima during World War II to the effort required to get the national debt under control.

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

Filed under: Michele Bachmann • SOTU 2011 • Tea Party Express
soundoff (47 Responses)
  1. x-rev

    Am I the only one who noticed her unemployment chart jumped from 2007 to 2009? Guess it would have made the chart less dramatic, since the Bush era catered in the beginning of the high unemployment rate.

    January 26, 2011 12:33 am at 12:33 am |
  2. Patriot

    Are there no more grown ups in the GOP?

    January 26, 2011 12:46 am at 12:46 am |
  3. Lou

    Rep Paul Ryan gave the official republican response. I question CNN's decision to give a global audience to Rep Buchamm also. To be fair, CNN then should have given any other republican an opportunity to respond to the President's address. Bad choice.

    January 26, 2011 12:59 am at 12:59 am |
  4. Hot Patata

    I don't understand. Is Bachmann saying that President Obama is like Emperor Hirohito now?

    January 26, 2011 01:01 am at 1:01 am |
  5. Will

    Seriously.This lady apparently slept though Civics, Basic Math and History.

    January 26, 2011 01:03 am at 1:03 am |
  6. Tina

    Michelle – you were out-classed by our President. Sit down and shut up!

    January 26, 2011 01:04 am at 1:04 am |
  7. normajean

    What a joke.This woman with extraordinary hubris attempted to give a speech following the Presidents and looked and acted as if she were in a trance, In a way I think she was, She threw out the same garbage she has been dishing out for months,with little if any solid logic involved and a "pie in the sky" program for our country if she became president { Her ultimate aim}. She, a minimally connected politician was telling the president how he should be running the country. Heaven help us if her dreams come true....Voters, become involved. Read, listen and think. It's up to you in the finals.!!!!

    January 26, 2011 01:13 am at 1:13 am |
  8. Cliff Vegas

    Michelle Bachmann did nothing to attenuate a cohesive Tea Party plan. She did the easy thing – she criticized without offing a single truly constructive idea to improve our country. I'm glad she spoke. She solidified in my mind that the Tea Party leadership is, at best, a cheerleading squad for the most extreme and divisive people in our country.

    January 26, 2011 01:15 am at 1:15 am |
  9. Chris

    Bachman talking out of both sides of her mouth again. She combines a call for unity with speach attacking the President. Then she ends with the metaphor of Iwo Jima, speaking how we came together to beat back a "totalitarian aggressor." The Tea Party repeatedly represents Obama as a "totalitarian aggressor" – so it is just another snide attack and pretty much a call for his overthrow.

    Nearly every economist of note has credited the stimulus program with stablizing the economy. Few people appreciated just how much we were teetering on the edge of complete economic collpase. If they think 10% unemployment is bad, most economist predicted that unemployment would exceed 25% without the stimuls.

    And again more misinformation regarding Health Care Reform. I love how they harp about America has the best healthcare in the world – when really we have the worst of any industrialized nation. We do have the best healthcare if you happen to be rich – or in Congress and get a lifetime of premium healthcare all at taxpayer expense.

    January 26, 2011 01:20 am at 1:20 am |
  10. Anonymous

    This woman needs to seriously relax, herself and numerous republicans have criticized and called for a repeal for Obama's plan, with absolutely nothing to put in it's place except numerous ideas and "concepts". It has already been proven by numerous moderate sources and economists, that a repeal is going to cost us much more in the long run. She is just trying to appease the big insurance company's that have been robbing us blind for the past thirty years.

    I'm going to be grateful when the Tea Party ends up splitting the Republican vote, and setting Dem's up for another term.

    Restore Sanity!

    January 26, 2011 01:22 am at 1:22 am |
  11. thomas

    is she working for our enemy ?

    January 26, 2011 01:25 am at 1:25 am |
  12. Tina Stockton

    Why do you even give this Caribou Barbie from Minnesota any attention???? She is a bimbo.

    January 26, 2011 01:25 am at 1:25 am |
  13. trev

    shame on you guys for giving these scum a platform.

    January 26, 2011 01:30 am at 1:30 am |
  14. Julie C

    Who cares what this nutcake thinks? She's an embarrassment.

    January 26, 2011 01:32 am at 1:32 am |
  15. Stu

    Michell Bachmann is a lunatic. If she is not on medication, she should be. She is an embarrassment to all Americans and it is hard to believe that mainstream Republicans think she has any credibility. Today, I heard her claim that the founding fathers ended slavery. She specifically mentioned John Quincy Adams, Jefferson and Washington. Jefferson and Washington, of course, were slave owners. And I guess she forgot what the Civil War was about and why it was not until 1964 that Congress finally, over heavy Republican objection, finally got around to passing the Civil Right and Voting Rights Act. She is just completely insane.

    January 26, 2011 01:39 am at 1:39 am |
  16. Sherry McDonald

    That wasn't a rebuttal to Obama's SOTU speech. That was an infomercial for a crazy lady who thinks she can be president.
    CNN was stupid enough to legitimize her by broadcasting her silliness worldwide. Somebody needs to define the " Peter Principle" to her. She's been promoted to beyond her capabilities already. She can't even do ' Congresswoman' effectively. She's light entertainment at best.

    January 26, 2011 01:41 am at 1:41 am |
  17. John Matthew

    Part of our problem is people like Bachmann who just cannot find anything positive. Even Jesus will not be good enough for these people.

    January 26, 2011 01:44 am at 1:44 am |
  18. Chedar

    The people of minessota must be brainless to vote for Bachmann. Is this all you can deliver?

    January 26, 2011 01:53 am at 1:53 am |
  19. Skeeb

    There's nothing like an infomercial from Michele Bachmann to make one miss Sarah Palin.

    January 26, 2011 01:55 am at 1:55 am |
  20. keithc

    I prefer the Obama speech. This is a time for self-criticism not back-stabbing.

    January 26, 2011 02:09 am at 2:09 am |
  21. Patriots Salute the Flag! Traitors don't!!!

    Wonderful speech and rebuttal. She hit Obama right on the head. His lies will not fly anymore. America will pull out of this but not by his work for there is notrhing he does or says worthwhile.

    January 26, 2011 02:19 am at 2:19 am |
  22. Mark

    Sarah and Michelle in 2012. They are our only hope.

    January 26, 2011 02:36 am at 2:36 am |
  23. Darth Vadik, CA

    Blame the media first, then blame Obama for spending money on Americans instead on more wars, and end it up with saying healthcare for everyone is a bad idea...

    ...only in the Republican upside down world is this supposed to be a "good" message, Republicans please get your heads checked out, there is something seriously wrong in there...

    January 26, 2011 02:43 am at 2:43 am |
  24. corey

    are we better off now than we were two years ago if you say no then you are a liar!

    January 26, 2011 02:54 am at 2:54 am |
  25. Pretzel Logic

    This from a woman who claims the Founding Fathers ended slavery. "a nation that currently enjoys the world's best healthcare" – is she Canadian?

    January 26, 2011 03:08 am at 3:08 am |
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