Bachmann targets Michelle Obama
February 16th, 2011
08:50 AM ET
12 years ago

Bachmann targets Michelle Obama

Washington (CNN) - Rep. Michele Bachmann, a potential Republican presidential candidate, is taking issue with Michelle Obama over the first lady's recent promotion of breast-feeding.

Speaking to conservative talk radio host Laura Ingraham Tuesday, the Minnesota Republican said Obama's efforts to promote breast-feeding and the IRS's announcement that nursing supplies that aide in the practice can be deducted from tax returns amounts to a "new definition [of] the nanny state."

"This is very consistent with where the hard left is coming from," Bachmann told Ingraham. "For them, government is the answer to every problem."

"I've given birth to five babies and I breast fed every single one of these babies," she added. "To think that government has to go out and buy my breast pump for my babies? You wanna talk about the nanny state, I think you just got a new definition."

The comments come on the heels of Obama's recent contention that breast-feeding can play a key role in reducing childhood obesity.

"We also want to focus on the important touch points in a child's life. And what we're learning now is that early intervention is key. Breastfeeding. Kids who are breastfed longer have a lower tendency to be obese," Obama told a group of reporters last week, according to Politics Daily.

"Breastfeeding is a very personal choice for every woman," Kristina Schake, a spokeswoman for Obama, later said. "We are trying to make it easier for those who choose to do it."

It's not the first time Obama has faced ire from the right when it comes to childhood nutrition. Sarah Palin told Ingraham last fall that "the first lady cannot trust parents to make decisions for their own children, for their own families in what we should eat."

Filed under: Michele Bachmann • Michelle Obama
soundoff (299 Responses)
  1. Grondahl

    If Mrs. Bachmann has a beef with the whole tax write-off thing, Mrs. Obama is not the place to start. Unless the article grossly misconstrued the connection, the tax write-off things is in the IRS's and Congress' court.

    Long term, what's more expensive: A one-time breast pump expense or formula? How much state money is spent on buying formula for people on welfare and EBT? Formula is much, much more expensive over the long term.

    So in a fairly linear way, Mrs. Obama is supporting something that would lower food stamp costs for states. Her campaigns for lowered childhood obesity in general will help lower healthcare costs, unless Republicans stonewall her at every turn. You'd think they're trying to see her fail. But I'm sure they wouldn't stoop to such a level.

    February 16, 2011 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  2. Jerrold

    Michele Bachmann is ignorant and down right mean. Ms. Obama has been and continues to be working towards the improved health and fitness of children in this country. What people should take away from this article is how little Michele Bachmann has to offer this country. Her state should be ashamed for voting her into office.

    February 16, 2011 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  3. Maryann

    Yet, these same women want to be up in my uterus, telling me what I can and cannot do with it!


    February 16, 2011 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  4. Kristin

    Gee, I wonder if Rep. Bachman opposes tax write off for business related expenses...dinner out with clients, mileage, clothing for work, gym memberships. I suppose supporting the "nanny state" for big business is somehow justifiable to her.

    February 16, 2011 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  5. Jan Hetterly

    Bachmann is the new Palin; have we ever heard her say something constructive?
    All these women can do is gripe about somebody else.

    February 16, 2011 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  6. BL09

    I'm beginning to reallly not like this Bachmann woman. Can she find nothing else to grouse about?

    February 16, 2011 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  7. video guy

    This woman is out of her league, going against the First Lady. How about working to cut the millions going to rich farmers like herself and the congress woman from South Dakota.

    February 16, 2011 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  8. Just Sayin'

    Blah, blah, blah! Too bad the only publicity the far right females can garnish is to lob insults at the First Lady. How pathetic!

    There are more important issues to be resolved like JOBS.

    February 16, 2011 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  9. IleneD

    First....How is Michelle Obama responsible for an IRS ruling?

    Second.....Ms. Bachman presents the issue as if ANYONE who buys a breast pump can deduct it from their taxes...that is not the case. The fact of the matter is one can either use their Flex Spending Account to purchase one, or IF one’s TOTAL medical costs meets the required percentage of adjusted gross income, THEN one can deduct the cost of the breast pump.

    Facts...a concept that the far right seems to be very unfamiliar with.

    February 16, 2011 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  10. Brian Nordin

    As long as the government "advice" comes from the right, the Conservatives are ok with it. Remember "just say no"? I'm guessing that Ms. Bachman is getting a big fat campaign donation from Big Soda, Big Fast Food, and Big Junk Food to criticize what is obviously a very logical attempt by the government to inform the citizenry about the dangers of being over-weight – which by anyone's account is a HUGE problem in this country – which costs all of us Billions of dollars in increased health costs. Can you feel the absolute hate toward the Obama's by the Palins, Limbaughs, and Bachmans of the world?

    February 16, 2011 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  11. Debi

    Michelle Bachmann is a quack. I hope her and Palin run together for president. I will pop the popcorn and sit back to watch the show. Two clowns running the circus of the TEA party. For once, campaign ads will be worth watching.

    February 16, 2011 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  12. Cynthia

    The government did pay for you to breast feed,'re a government 'employee'. Also, you have a sweetheart deal with health insurance and what is taxable as a member of Congress. This is about babies' health. You and your fellow zealots want the government to be invasive about reproduction and remember...the want all children to be born, regardless of the circumstances (assault, incest, etc), but the government can't help with their healthy growth. So, again, for you it's shallow, irresponsible rhetoric without any consequences for you and others, you don't adopt, foster or care for any of the babies who need help the most. I'm disgusted with you and others who think like you.

    February 16, 2011 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  13. Rachel

    Oh come on!
    How DARE the government try to make things a little bit easier for breast feeding moms. The gall. The ire!
    I notice how Ms. Bachmann has zip to say about pulling ALL federal funding from Planned Parenthood, and has chosen to focus on...breast feeding.
    I'd rather live in a "nanny state" (?) than in the anti-woman state that the right seems to want to cultivate.

    February 16, 2011 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  14. lori demulling

    This is another case of the government getting involved in and controlling our personal choices and freedoms.

    February 16, 2011 10:18 am at 10:18 am |

    Michele Bachmann is an ignorant fool ...I hope she runs for president. She and her extremist conservative ilk are dragging the Republican party further and further to the right. It will push the moderate independents back into the Democrat fold.... Keep flappin' dem lips...

    February 16, 2011 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  16. Vito LaBella

    Our First Lady seems so bored with her position that she's looking for any opportunity to make noise that will be heard. IMHO, she's become invasive in her subject matter and more condescending in her manner. Sometimes, people in positions of authority or influence should reflect more carefully upon what they intend to say and also upon how the message might be construed or misconstrued. Breast feeding is not something the First Lady should be championing. We already have scads of agencies and departments throughout all levels of Federal, State and local governments addressing health, well-being and family issues.

    February 16, 2011 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  17. Dj head

    So i guess she saying she opposes fighting child obesity...or is it because Mrs.Obama said it its a problem... Republicans....

    February 16, 2011 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  18. Mac

    She has no problem accepting government handouts to help milk her cows, yet she has no compassion for a poor mother.

    February 16, 2011 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  19. Greg Green

    Give me a break, not only does breastfeeding help to prevent early childhood obesity, it's actually healthier for them. Why do you think women produce it. Nanny state? Promoting good health in a country that is entirely too fat as it is, is promoting a nanny state? Really. You don't have anything else better to do with your time besides attack a woman that wants to make help make our country more aware of a healthy lifestyle?

    February 16, 2011 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  20. Dumbfounded

    Uhmmm.... seems like a pretty reasonable tax break – something I thought Republicans generally favored. Where is the outrage about all the deductions we allow businesses to make from their taxes?

    February 16, 2011 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  21. Grundoon

    Wow!! Of all the things to take issue with. Unbelievable! Bachman is a complete and total ignorant nut case!! If she had two brain cells to rub together the friction might form a cherent thought. Alas, all we have is more of her mal-firing synaptic impulses resulting in her spewing stupidity and down right lunacy. If Mrs. Obama discovered a cure for cancer, this nit wit would be screaming about how the FLOTUS is promoting not only government control of peopel's lives, but now their deaths, too. If the tax break were available when Bachman had her babies you'd better believe she'd have taken advantage of it.

    February 16, 2011 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  22. fayse

    Michele Bachmann is obviously using Sarah Palin as a role model. What a pity. Every First Lady has a project. Recent studies show that breast fed babies have a lower rate of childhood obesity. Obesity is a huge problem in children and a real health hazard. These two nut jobs are attacking the First Lady and in doing so, they are ignoring the welfare of children.

    February 16, 2011 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  23. Unenrolled in Massachusetts

    I am having trouble deciding which one is nuttier - Sarah Palin or Michelle Bachmann. Wake up Republicans! These lunatics are setting the agenda for you.

    February 16, 2011 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  24. Jim

    This is just Bachman wishing she was as good a mother as Michelle Obama is. She and her cohorts are just scum.

    February 16, 2011 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
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