Bachmann's John Wayne slip
June 27th, 2011
05:02 PM ET
9 years ago

Bachmann's John Wayne slip

(CNN) - On the eve of her official presidential announcement, GOP presidential candidate Michele Bachmann incorrectly identified movie star John Wayne's origins in an attempt to draw a parallel between her and the American icon.

"I want them to know just like John Wayne is from Waterloo Iowa, that's the spirit I have too," Bachmann said Sunday on Fox News. "It's embracing America. It's sacrificing for America."

John Wayne the movie star was born in Winterset, Iowa, which is approximately three hours Southwest of Waterloo, Iowa, Bachmann's native city and the site of her presidential announcement Monday. But according to the Waterloo Chamber of Commerce, the actor's parents did live in the city at one point.

However, it was a different John Wayne that caused the misstep to go viral on the internet.

Serial killer John Wayne Gacy was born in Chicago, Illinois and later lived and worked in Waterloo where he was convicted of sodomy and sentenced to prison. Gacy, known as "the clown killer" was found guilty of 33 murders in the Chicago area in 1980 and died by lethal injection in 1994.

Bachman's campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Filed under: 2012 • Michele Bachmann
soundoff (139 Responses)
  1. Marc

    Hahaha, another Republican just making stuff up, it's truly sad and ridiculous. Hey, she also thinks the American Revolution began in New Hampshire.

    June 27, 2011 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  2. Ken

    You HAVE to excuse her!! She is a Republican. They just say anything that they would like to be the truth. Whether it is or not – well, that just doesn't matter! Remember the bridge to nowhere in Alaska?? – and the "Thanks but no thanks" lie??

    June 27, 2011 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  3. Charlie in Maine

    I do not like her politics and I cringe at the thought that this wacko could come anywhere near the Oval Office, but come on people lighten up any one who has to say as much as any candidate does to get elected is going to mess up from time to time....Sarah Palin and Paul Revere, Barack Pbama and the number of states, even the "great communicator", Ronald Reagan was known to mess up from time to time. I tell you Abe Lincoln was soooooo lucky there was no YouTube in his day.

    June 27, 2011 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  4. dave

    John Wayne was also a womanizing alcoholic who was known to be a patriot on screen but who went to the same lengths Dick Cheney did to avoid really serving in the military, Ms. the similarites extend to those characteristics also?

    June 27, 2011 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  5. Kenneth the VI of Minneapolis

    I would advise everyone to be careful of people who wear their "patriotism" on their sleeve....or people who always saying "sacrificing for American", when they have never sacrificed anything, but getting government handouts, like Bachmann has all of her adult life.

    June 27, 2011 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  6. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    I'm not as concerned about her lack of John Wayne knowledege as I am about her ignorance of pertinent gub'mint knowledge and its' three branches.
    Michelle doesn't see 3 branches of government, she sees a tree that she can swing from limb from limb as her and her Teatards take us back, wayyy back to those prairie days of yore.

    June 27, 2011 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  7. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Here's something else she's got in common with the Duke: a mean racist streak.

    June 27, 2011 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  8. Rdepontb

    Debunked...Actor John Wayne's parents met and lived for a while in Waterloo. No crime in what she said this time. You jumped too quickly, and in so doing diluted your strengths

    June 27, 2011 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  9. Republicans - The "Not Intended To Be Factually Accurate" Party

    The lies, exagerations, mis-statements, gaffes, mis-spokenments, "I-made-a-mistake" have started.

    All you have to do with her is ask her a question and then 1 or 2 deeper level follow ups and the Flakeyness is revealed.

    June 27, 2011 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  10. Clwyd

    Facts mean nothing to this idiot and the teabuggers that support her. She is walking Loony tune!

    June 27, 2011 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  11. Silence Dogood

    Didn't John Wayne also say he didn't think blacks "should be isolated until they become educated enough to participate in society?" Is THIS the "spirit of John Wayne" that Bachmann wants?

    June 27, 2011 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  12. drew

    Facts are simple and facts are straight
    Facts are lazy and facts are late
    Facts all come with points of view
    Facts don't do what I want them to
    Facts just twist the truth around
    Facts are living turned inside out
    Facts are getting the best of them

    June 27, 2011 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  13. gt

    she doesnt have a chance....

    June 27, 2011 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  14. yasmine

    in the words of George Wallace yesterday...."(Michelle Bachman), are you a flake?"

    June 27, 2011 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  15. John

    John Wayne wasn't born In Waterloo Iowa. Michele Bachmann Is just another air head. It just go to show people the Republican don't know half the stuff they are taking about. It seem to be every time she talk about something she make a mistake.

    June 27, 2011 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  16. Chris

    John Wayne's (the actor) parents lived in Waterloo just before his birth. So it's not that bad of a slip or whatever. But dont let that get in the way of a character assassination we all know the media was just waiting to get started on with Bachmann.

    June 27, 2011 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  17. Joe

    Ms. Bachmann needs to do her homework, especially history and geography. Remember when Gerald Ford said during his '76 presidential debate that the Soviet Union had no role or influence in eastern Europe? Didn't work out too well for him.

    June 27, 2011 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  18. America First

    Some of you get offended. "She just mispoke!. Just a mistake." What happens when she can't tell the differences between South Carolina and South Dakota? "Yes, Mr. Governor, those FEMA trailers for your displaced hurricane victims are on the way!" What if it's the difference between North and South Korea?

    June 27, 2011 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  19. Chartercandidate

    This is ridiculous. No candidate for office should be judged based on their knowledge of hollywood trivia. She missspoke. Politicians from both parties misspeak daily. Judge her, or Romney, or Obama, or any candidate on policies or things that they should be expected to know. Next we'll be complaining that some senatorial candidate shouldn't be elected because he doesn't know how may seats there are in the Russian parliament.

    June 27, 2011 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  20. BP

    Sweet. She wants America to know that she has the spirit of a convicted serial killer and sodomizer, the "clown killer." That's awesome.

    What an idiot. Her handlers need to take more control over her research and stop letting her come up with her own script. This is Palin, part II.

    June 27, 2011 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  21. Brendan H., San Antonio, TX

    Let's see, Ditzy made a factual error?!?!?! Say it isn't so!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    And by the way "yasmine" it was Chris Wallace not George, although that reference makes it even funnier, dontcha think?!?!?!?!?!

    June 27, 2011 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  22. jakeinlove

    By the time 2012 gets here we'll have enough goofs to have a Michelle Bachmann viral movie.

    June 27, 2011 06:40 pm at 6:40 pm |
  23. midnitejax

    I loive the comparison of bachmann and John Wayne. John Wayne was a staunch Republican supporter. He also was a draft dodger in WW2. He used a hardship deferment claim to avoid serving. He claimed that his large family required him to earn a living to spupport them, while others died so he could live in luxory. His movies sold war bonds, and that was his great contribution. He never left the US to entertain the troops like so many others. His claim to fame is shame.........he was not a member of "The Greatest Generation".

    June 27, 2011 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  24. Lizzy10

    She slays me everytime she opens her mouth, so it makes sense.

    June 27, 2011 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  25. Glenn

    Give the woman enough time, she'll make enough rediculously stupid and ignorant remarks that she'll become even more of a laughing stock as the campaign goes on. Is this the best that the Republi-con party has to offer?!?!

    June 27, 2011 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
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