Bachmann targets Michelle Obama
February 16th, 2011
08:50 AM ET
11 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. Henry Miller, Libertarian

    While I agree breast feeding isn't even remotely the proper concern of government, this is a bit of an over-reaction even compared to Bachmann's usual ranting.

    February 16, 2011 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  2. The Real Tom Paine

    What ever happened to the Right's commitment to families? Oh, I forgot, only they know what is good for everyone. Come on, people, you've been slamming Michelle for trying to combat childhood obesity becuase you feel its an invasion of the family by the government: would you have done that to Nancy Reagan over the " Just Say No" campaign? Would you have accused her of interfering in your right to get strung out on crack?

    February 16, 2011 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  3. Rob

    Keep on attacking. Michelle Obama has more class than Bachmann can ever dream of.

    February 16, 2011 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  4. Proud member of "Global Zero"

    Is this woman even a mother??? Does she know nothing about health issues at all? Why do people keep electing idiots???

    February 16, 2011 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  5. Dnick47

    Give me a break! Only a fool (in the English and Biblical senses of the word) would make an issue out of breast feeding. This show me that Bachman and her feloow GOPers have no class what-so-ever.

    February 16, 2011 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  6. AEK

    Wow! This woman is REALLY stupid! And I thought it was just an act! Come on Ms. Bachmann, give us a break, think about what you're saying here!

    February 16, 2011 09:09 am at 9:09 am |
  7. Bisqueen23

    Is Bachmann really that desperate? My God, its breastfeeding. Bachmann has a problem with promoting the healthiest, nature intended method of feeding our children? Is she on the payroll of the baby formula companies? I can only guess at what roils aroudn in her torturned mind.

    February 16, 2011 09:09 am at 9:09 am |
  8. Shep

    It strikes me that Ms. Bachman is looking for any issue, no matter how innocuous, to attack the Obamas. What is wrong with allowing the cost of a breast pump to be deducted as a medical cost? In the end, thanks to the tax code, the vast majority of individuals really never get to se that deduction since it is offset by the bizarre formula used to determine the amount of the deduction.

    February 16, 2011 09:09 am at 9:09 am |
  9. Richard

    This woman is a Ticking Time Bomb – who will explode and sink into oblivion – Hopefully!!

    February 16, 2011 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  10. Henry

    I don't really care whether people look like a walrus. I agree with personal choices. What I do mind is for society paying for the health care of these whales. This is where the state does have an interest. Bachmann and Palin ought to understand that perhaps we Americans are completely uneducated about what we should allow our children to eat. If we were educated and can be trusted we would not see obese children. Personal responsibility is fine UNTIL it affects others.

    February 16, 2011 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  11. jules sand-perkins

    For once, Bachmann is right: there is no reason for me to buy a breast pump for any woman who is not my wife, unless that woman can prove that I am the father of her child.

    February 16, 2011 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  12. LMC

    Imagine, trying to do things that are good for our children! That's surely despicable! Oh the horrors! Aren't there enough REAL issues out there to pick on?

    February 16, 2011 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  13. Darth Vadik, CA

    You really know Republicans are truly awful and have nothing on the Obamas if they are going after a "breastfeeding" comment. I'd ask the question again, WHAT IS WRONG WITH THESE PEOPLE? but alas, we all know socipaths when we hear them.

    February 16, 2011 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  14. mryan

    What a lovely photo of Bachmann; nice to see the media isn't favoring one side over another....

    February 16, 2011 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  15. Mitch

    The conservative way of parenting seems to be more of 'let the baby raise itself'....

    February 16, 2011 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  16. Alex

    Well Bachmann – for a woman who gets her riches from the tax payers and whose kids entire meals are funded by tax payers, you have no place to talk!

    Breast pumps are VERY expensive and are all but a necessity if a woman wants to go back to work. If the government wants to provide assistance to poor mothers who need to get back to work but can't afford breastpumps KUDOS to that government!

    Once again, the party of "family values" shows they are anything but that!

    February 16, 2011 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  17. Rose

    Really? Promoting breast feeding is a bad thing? Such attacks only make Representative Bachman sound petty.

    February 16, 2011 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  18. Betelmann

    The fundamental difference between conservatives and liberals is the former see the world as a zero-sum competitive jungle and see themselves as smarter and craftier than the average person. Liberals see the world as one in which people banded together - as families or communities or as a species - can make life better for all through cooperation and compromise. For conservatives, anything that helps others diminishes their own chances to corner a surplus for themselves. Thus, better that the children of others suffer from obesity and thus become easier prey for the conservatives' children. And so on. Nobody is suggesting forcing breast-feeding onto others. This is a matter of facilitating a practice which may be beneficial, making it easier for all to benefit from it if they choose. Ditto re obesity. Bachmann's outburst is nothing but the latest of her barely rational rants, rants that are silly at best.

    February 16, 2011 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  19. Shae_NC

    What a loon...
    As if there is something wrong with encouraging breast-feeding, something ALL the experts agree is best.
    I'm sure if Mrs. Obama said kids shouldn't eat rat poison, this lady would say she's trying to kill jobs for rat poison makers.

    Please go away lady.

    February 16, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  20. rs

    Michele Bachmann the definition of a Republican/Tea Party idiot.
    Attacking the First Lady for her right-minded attempts to make our children ore healthy is not just sick, but un-American. Does she really feel food corporations have our kid's best interests at heart?

    Bachmann is an embrassment- and a sign the Republican/Tea Party is doomed. If she is their voice, even a minor one, they are beneath contempt, and no longer qualified to play a role on the national stage.

    February 16, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  21. GrogInOhio

    Good grief... Republicans are opposed to affordable health care, opposed to the promotion of healthy eating habits and are now opposed to breast feeding babies? Geez... sounds like a bunch of shamans and witch doctors.

    February 16, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  22. davkat

    STOP THE HATE!! The Tea Party followers are carrying the water that will later be used to drown them!!

    February 16, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  23. chris some point you just have to really ask what has this country come to when you hear some of the things this lady and the rest of the far right Conservatives have to say about the President and the First Lady. They can be so disrespectful to the President that it is really a shame!! I may could understand if he and his wife were arrogant or just didn't give a hoot about the people and this country, but that is not the case.

    February 16, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  24. JC

    Really? You have an issue with offering assistance to young mothers so they can increase their babies health? But you have no problem giving tax breaks to oil companies? Get your damn priorities straight.

    February 16, 2011 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  25. peter

    Backman is obviously a backward thinking moron, to say the least!

    February 16, 2011 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
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