Bachmann: Schools should teach intelligent design
June 17th, 2011
06:52 PM ET
10 years ago

Bachmann: Schools should teach intelligent design

New Orleans, Louisiana (CNN) - Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann explained her skepticism of evolution on Friday and said students should be taught the theory of intelligent design.

Bachmann, a congresswoman from Minnesota, also proposed a major overhaul of the nation’s education system and said state administrators should be able to decide how they spend money allocated to them by the federal government.

"I support intelligent design," Bachmann told reporters in New Orleans following her speech to the Republican Leadership Conference. "What I support is putting all science on the table and then letting students decide. I don't think it's a good idea for government to come down on one side of scientific issue or another, when there is reasonable doubt on both sides."

Intelligent design suggests that the complexity of the universe cannot be explained by evolution alone, and must also be attributed to a creator or supernatural being.

"I would prefer that students have the ability to learn all aspects of an issue," Bachmann said. "And that's why I believe the federal government should not be involved in local education to the most minimal possible process."

Bachmann said educators should be granted the flexibility - and the money - to make curriculum decisions at the local level.

The federal government, she said, should "block grant all money currently that goes to the states back to the states, so that Louisiana can decide how they want to spend the money, which may in fact be different on how Minnesota spends its money."

She said her proposal would cut out "billions in dollars of bureaucracy" from the federal government.

soundoff (84 Responses)
  1. Scott

    Intelligent design is not science! It is religion and philosophy.

    June 17, 2011 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  2. Boocap

    What a terrifying woman...... " lets teach the science of Giving Up because we don't know!" Thankfully most intelligent people do not think that way or we would have never escaped the dark ages.

    June 17, 2011 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  3. Parth Punjabi

    Just ..... wow.

    June 17, 2011 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  4. JPO

    NO! Do not teach your religion in my school.

    June 17, 2011 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  5. jeff Kenney

    Bachmann is proof that intelligent design isn't feasible. Ignoring hundreds of years of scientific discovery to insist on teaching fairy tales is reason enough that she shouldn't be elected to any office. And letting States determine educational criteria will lead to a mindless electorate and the further division of this country by state into educated and uneducated pockets. Its bad enough that the mindless masses flock to cults (religions). We certainly don't need the pious right establishing their religion for the rest of us to follow – that would be no different than what the Afghans faced under the Taliban.

    June 17, 2011 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  6. Thankfully Independent

    Bachman is proof, herself, that there is a flaw in the intelligent design theory. Maybe someday there might be a Bachmann 2.0?

    June 17, 2011 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  7. kayteesgr8

    that is the point MB!!!!! There IS NO SCIENCE to support intellegent design!!!!! UGHGHGH~ how does she continue to get away w/ spewing this nonsense and her constituents don't challenge her? She looks good, I'll admit. But everytime she opens her jaw, this illogical, twisted nonsense spews out........She continues to bash PRESIDENT (thank you very much) Obama, yet has yet to offer ONE viable alternative solution. It's disturbing that so many seemingly intelligent people listen to her....and want more!!!! I repeat, UGH!

    June 17, 2011 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  8. PaulC

    The Republican Party is a good argument refuting intelligent design.

    June 17, 2011 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  9. Greg

    As soon as intelligent design ha one shred of science to back it up then we can teach it in schools. Until then which means forever it will not be taught in public schools and any parent who pushes for it should have their education nullified

    June 17, 2011 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  10. Johan S

    The theory of intelligent design is religion not science.

    Just because something can't be explained doesn't mean God does it. Nobody could explain how disease worked 200 years ago, According to intelligent design logic, a "scientific" explanation would have been that God or the Devil was causing the disease symptoms. If people just believed that God caused disease, we would never have discovered the theory of infectious disease and viruses.

    Since we discovered disease causing bacteria, we invented antibiotics. And for cancer, chemotherapy.

    The evidence against intelligent design is overwhelming, from the fossil record to the fact that the universe iis so large .. and stars are so distant. How come the Sun looks like a 4 billion year old star rather than a 6000 year old star (we can see star formation in some parts of the galaxy btw). The light from the stars in galaxies other than out own took millions of years to get here (we can tell by many different factors such as the dimness, the redshift, age based on stellar astrophysics, and lack of parallax shift). Many laws of physics would be completely wrong if the galaxies and stars were not far away - it would be as though God intentionally created many weird things just to fool us. No Nobel prize winning scientist supports young Earth creationism (The Nobel prize winner creationists love to quote .. -> Richard Smalley supported old Earth creationism which dates the earth as being 6 billion years old .. and that evolution did not act alone).

    June 17, 2011 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  11. TheMathProphet

    I am a Christian and a science teacher (in MN no less). One requirement of a valid scientific theory is that it is disprovable. As Intelligent Design (ID) is not disprovable (it would require disproving God) it is not a valid scientific theory and therefore cannot be taught. ID is a belief and beliefs are not science, despite what Bachmann might think . . .

    June 17, 2011 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  12. Xenophon

    “Intelligent Design“? Really?

    "What I support is putting all science on the table and then letting students decide. I don't think it's a good idea for government to come down on one side of scientific issue or another, when there is reasonable doubt on both sides."

    Umm...there is no “reasonable doubt“ about this. Intelligent design is not science, never has been, and is not supported by anyone with a real science degree. I suppose we should let local school boards decide whether they believe in gravity? Should we just let students decide whether sunrise is from the rotation of the earth or Apollo pulling the sun across the sky with his chariot?

    June 17, 2011 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  13. MrManhattan

    The more I hear about Michelle Bachmann, the less I'm inclined to believe in intelligent design.

    June 17, 2011 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  14. Angela

    That's a great idea. let's also teach astrology alongside astronomy, and crystal healing should definitely be a part of geology.

    June 17, 2011 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  15. John

    INTELLIGENT DESIGN?......REALLY?......Ok, listen up, the world wasn't created in seven days, sorry to bust your bubble but its not true. There is no superior being in charge that created the time & space as we know it....come on now let's exercise some common sense. Schools have no business teaching creationism....what happen to separation of religion & state?. I thought this was America & not Germany in 1941. Stick to the facts & science has a lot of that and sorry to bust your bubble again but evolution does exist & its happening now & global warming is also a fact. Wake up ZOMBIES!!! your research & look at the facts!!!!

    June 17, 2011 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  16. They ought to change from the elephant to the hippo...

    Unfortunately, Michele Bachmann is a perfect, living, counter example TO intelligent design....

    June 17, 2011 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  17. Tony

    Dear Lord, please protect us from the more idiotic members of your fan club.

    June 17, 2011 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  18. Hardy Macia

    Another social conservative intelligent designer. I say keep the social issues off the table - Americans want candidates focusing on the economy/deficit, but glad they are putting their stakes in the ground so I know which bible thumpers not to vote for.

    June 17, 2011 08:24 pm at 8:24 pm |
  19. DataBoy

    na na na na na na...hey heyyyyehhh..goooodbyeeeee

    June 17, 2011 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  20. Tom McB

    She supports "unintelligent design". You don't toss things on the table that and let kids decide. You teach science and leave the other stuff to churches. What a true wackjob this woman is! I wish these people were exempt from being able to benefit from medical advances. If it was up to them, there wouldn't be any.

    June 17, 2011 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  21. Four and The Door

    She said her proposal would cut out "billions in dollars of bureaucracy" from the federal government.
    State governments are fully capable of determining their appropriate education programs. Certainly it would result in more creativity in that important endeavor and absolutely reduce the wasted bureaucracy that now permeates American education efforts.

    Michelle Bachmann is a very reasonable candidate. I look forward to hearing more of the perspective she has on other things. In my estimate, the more she gets out there the more people will identify with her. This is getting exciting.

    June 17, 2011 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  22. TomNPitt

    "Sarah Bachman" and "Intelligent Design" in the same headline. How funny is that.

    June 17, 2011 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  23. fayse

    I just saw this woman give an interview here is some of what she said. She wants to overturn Roe vs Wade, repeal the Health care reform, DADT and have marriage be defined as between a man and a woman. She does not intend to vote to raise the debt ceiling and she is in favor of the Ryan budget plan.
    So from that I assume she wants to overturn womens rights, she is against gays and she wants to enforce her ideas on morality. That tells me that she is an extreme right wing phoney religous zealot. I believe in God but, I do not want this type of self serving person in charge of our Nation. In my heart, I can not believe that the majority of Americans will tolerate someone like this to be President. Our own personal faith, and our own personal beliefs are exactly that and we do not need someone in power to push their beliefs down our throats.
    Faith is personal and should not be dictated by any leader. These tea party people are dangerous to our freedom and please remember, you cannot legislate morality.

    June 17, 2011 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  24. Janet Goodell

    I am a science teacher and a Christian. The theory of evolution by natural selection and other proposed means is not mutually exclusive with my belief in God. However, how can I teach intelligent design to students who do not believe in God? Moreover, intelligent design is not science. I don't know how you can teach it to college students preparing to be teachers who do not share the belief in a creator. I have no objection to students learning intelligent design at Sunday school or church youth group. I do not force my students to accept the T of E by NS; I only wish that they understand what it is– perhaps so they can debate its validity with some intelligence of their own.

    June 17, 2011 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  25. larry

    I know it would'nt take her long, before the true basket case came out.

    June 17, 2011 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
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