Bachmann's warning to South Carolina voters
August 26th, 2011
08:23 AM ET
10 years ago

Bachmann's warning to South Carolina voters

Charleston, South Carolina (CNN) – Rep. Michele Bachmann was firing on all cylinders Thursday evening, dismissing competitors' management experience and laid out, in dire terms, how the 2012 presidential race is a "last chance election" and why she's the only candidate who has the chops to make the U.S. "the big dog" in the world.

The congresswoman from Minnesota, who secured a first place finish in a crucial Iowa straw poll two weeks ago, trails Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and Texas Gov. Rick Perry in the latest national Gallup poll sizing up the Republican field.

She told hundreds gathered at a Charleston town hall that her proven record of standing up to special interests trumps a background of governing that Perry and Romney bring to the table.

"That's the experience you want to have," Bachmann said, referring to her stand-up record. "Not someone who's going to just manage all of this big government. Because you can put a Republican in there to manage big government but you're never going to have the United States as a big prosperous, big-dog-in-the-world again if you do that," she said.

Bachmann stressed the need to repeal President Obama's health care reform law, or so-called Obamacare, before it "metastasizes" like a cancer and "we will not be able to get rid of it."

"You can't put socialized medicine into a country and think that ever again you can elect a Republican as president – or a conservative or even a tea partier as president – and think that somehow we're going to get back to limited government," Bachmann said. "It won't happen because socialized medicine is the definition of big government."

The three-term congresswoman believes her time inside the Beltway, challenging Democrats and rank-and-file Republicans, is how she can change how Washington works.

"I'm so absolutely concerned because I've been there. I've been on the front lines," Bachmann said, comparing her legislative experience to a battlefield. "I have wept in Washington, D.C. watching what's happening to our country. This is real."

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, a fellow Republican, showed up at the town hall and asked a question about a labor dispute as "an undecided voter" from Columbia. Bachmann was also asked about "reigning in" federal agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency and the Energy Department. In another answer, she said she would support a federal amendment to define marriage as between a man and a woman.

Bachmann, who was also asked about her position on illegal immigration, told the audience she thinks it is possible through legislation to stop the "anchor baby" problem of children born to mothers living illegally in the United States. When that happens she said, "A whole new set of implications arise for the United States. I do not believe that the American taxpayer should be paying benefits to people who are in the United States illegally."

Bachmann wrapped up questions from the 90-minute town hall, hosted by South Carolina GOP freshman Rep. Tim Scott, with a heartfelt pitch to back her candidacy.

"I think it's a last chance election if you ask me," Bachmann said. "So think about it very carefully. We need a miracle right now. I'm a praying woman, a believing woman, and I believe we need a miracle but I also believe that there's a God big enough to give us that miracle."


Filed under: 2012 • Michele Bachmann • South Carolina
soundoff (87 Responses)
  1. Sandy

    Oh my! She really is crazy!

    August 26, 2011 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  2. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    I'm a praying woman, a believing woman, and I believe we need a miracle but I also believe that there's a God big enough to give us that miracle
    -------------------------------------------------–
    I'm assuming you're praying to the same big God that you prayed to decide the 2008 election?
    What happened? His answer wasn't clear enough for you? Don't worry he's going to REPEAT his answer to you AGAIN in 2012. Maybe this time you'll abide by His decision and WORK with the man.
    Obama 2012.

    August 26, 2011 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  3. Tam

    How can a great country like America not want to care for the health and illness of its population. Why is everyone I know so petrified of losing a job and not having benefits? What a cruel place.

    August 26, 2011 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  4. contessa

    Somehow I think comparing America to a "Shining City on a Hill " (President Reagan's words) sounds like the REAL AMERICA!! The reality is America will literally go to the "dogs" if we elect another Republican President in 2012!!

    August 26, 2011 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  5. Confused_in_MN

    I'm so confused...seems like everyone here can see she's a nut-case, but why is she still leading in the polls? FYI...she represents one part of Minnesota, not the whole state...we also have Keith Ellison, the first Muslim eleced to the House. So please don't hold it against us that she comes from here...we're not all a bunch of right-wing conservatives.

    August 26, 2011 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  6. JD in Moraga, CA

    "...laid out, in dire terms, how the 2012 presidential race is a "last chance election" and why she's the only candidate who has the chops to make the U.S. "the big dog" in the world."

    How reassuring, coming from the big b&#ch in Minnesota...

    August 26, 2011 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  7. Donkey Party

    Wrong on every issue Shelly, you loony candering punt.

    August 26, 2011 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  8. Oldie in TampaBay

    all together now ... can we all together say 'delusional' .... this one is as bad as Palin ..

    August 26, 2011 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  9. maggie

    I find it incredibly interesting that for all of the heated "small government" "take government out of our lives" talk and strict program cutting that we're hearing from conservatives that the first two governors with their hand out for emergency money before the first rain drop even falls from Irene, McConnell and Christie, are not only conservative but two of the most vocal on these issues. No doubt, many states will need this money after the storm passes but it was an interesting observation for me to make nonetheless. Apparently, they wanted to make sure that their states were first in line and, oh, I guess there is room for government afterall.

    August 26, 2011 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  10. edpeters

    Won 'crucial Iowa straw poll' (got 80% of the votes she paid for). I hope she does stay in the race, if only for material for the late night comedians, and show just how ignorant some people can be. And keep reminding us that the GOP is the party of "fear", and not the party of knowledge!

    August 26, 2011 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  11. Bill

    I am sure her message of hate and bigotry plays well to the crowd in SC. We all know what kind of politicians come fron that miserable excuse of a state.

    August 26, 2011 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  12. MiddleOfTheRoad

    "I think it's a last chance election if you ask me," Bachmann said. "So think about it very carefully........."

    I agree. All of the angry voters must start thinking rationally. Remember, if you vote based on your anger, you will get an angry, irrational candidate.

    August 26, 2011 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  13. SecedingfromTexas

    I have a "warning" too..........................................
    Question: Where is Rick Perry this week-end. Glad you asked.
    He will be attending a "call to action" Hill Country (TX) Retreat, held for him by..............Leininger.
    One of the attendees will be David Barton, founder of WALLBUILDERS, contributor of $1.3M to Perry campaigns.
    Google this guy, and if his rhetoric does not make the hair stand up on the back of your neck, nothing will.

    August 26, 2011 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  14. Real Patriot

    Before the Civil War, as South Carolina was threatening secession it was said that "South Carolina was too small for a country and big for an insane asylum. Truer words have never been spoken"

    August 26, 2011 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  15. d

    "One thing Bachmann is consistent on; her total lack of knowledge about the powers the Constitution gives to each branch of the government. She thinks she can "close the doors and turn out the lights" at EPA. She thought Vice President Palin would exert considerable influence as President of the Senate."

    She also thinks that President Bachmann would have the power to repeal Obamacare. For all their claims of following the Constitution, the Tea Party politicians sure don't seem to understand what it says.

    August 26, 2011 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  16. SNAPPA

    You know what this woman is seriously mentally ill, there is now no doubt that she is suffereing from some kind of deficiency. While complaining of big government and massive spending because the US HAS been the "big dog" for years and now we are paying dearly for it. I for one am sick of the United States playing cop to every thug dictator in the world when there own people do nothing about it (Iraq). Then when we do something about it the people of that country hate us and don't want us there. We have our own problems and don't need to take on the worlds issues anymore.

    August 26, 2011 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  17. Bob

    This woman has a snowball's chance in hell of winning the general election. I'm so going to vote for her in SC. *troll face*

    August 26, 2011 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  18. Awesome

    So now we see the GOP plan to make us a Third world country. Close the EPA and make sure we pollute our land with toxins and destroy our forests and ocean by drilling/mining. All this by exploiting the middle class by lowering their wages below minimum wages, so corporations who bankrolled her can profit. Yes close the unions, dont create any new industry, just move the existing jobs to below minimum wage places where there is rampant exploitation of the hard working middle class. This GOP nominees sure have a vision for our country.

    August 26, 2011 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  19. Sam A

    I think Bachmann is a little behind the times. The United States tried to be the big police dog of the world, and now that's why half the nations of the world now hate us. I think the right approach is not to worry about other people and fix our own problems. It would be nice for some peace time, we haven't had that in over 10 years. The entire war was started for an economic stimulus and oil. Maybe it's time to look at things openly and not go blindly.

    August 26, 2011 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  20. ricnaustin

    It erks me to no end when politicians talk about ending so many government programs that have helped them out many times over (Bachman's recieved millions in Farm Aid and a lot for her husband's "pray the gay away" counseling centers). She wants minimized government, then why doesn't she give up her health insurance and other perks and stand with the rest of us? As for destroying the EPA, then let's dump trash, oil, gas, and emissions in her backyard and see how that works out for her. She wants government out of our business, but wants to shove her personal religious beliefs down our throats. So basically, don't do as I do, do as I say; or let's leave government out, but do it my way. She wants to ensure our children and grandchildren have a good life, yet she wants to destroy our environment. If she doesn't think people should assemble in unions, then she needs to reread the Constitution.

    Constitution/First Amendment:

    Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

    If there is a prayer to be answered, I pray she and her sicko's go away, because whatever their faith is, it's not the one I've read in the bible.

    This woman and all the other Teabaggers seriously scare me.

    August 26, 2011 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  21. Natalie in MN

    Bring it on, Bachman.....a debate with Obama would so destroy your blown out ego and highlight your shear incompetence in 5 short mins. or less. What a windbag! My Dad is a die-hard Republican and he's is embarrassed for the party for the likes of Perry, Bachman, Palin. He doesn't even argue w/me anymore, so it's no fun!

    August 26, 2011 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  22. Wes B.

    I hope people actually listen to the words coming out of her mouth. The things she says are so ridiculous, it's frightening.

    August 26, 2011 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  23. GL

    Bachmann stressed the need to repeal President Obama's health care reform law, or so-called Obamacare, before it "metastasizes" like a cancer and "we will not be able to get rid of it."

    All the Republicans candidates are big mouth without a plan. What is your plan Michelle for poor people that need government prevention? If these Republicans running win, the all will overthrow our government.

    August 26, 2011 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  24. JD

    Three things: 1) Obamacare is not socialized medicine. I wish it were. The vast majority of countries with socialized medicine spend far less on healthcare than we do and have healthier citizens. 2) Babies born in the US are not here illegally even if their parents are. Check it out, Michelle. It's in that Constitution you profess to love so much They are elgible for benefits. Their illegal parents are not. 3) She is right that this is a "last chance election." If she gets elected we are more than screwed.

    August 26, 2011 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  25. Dan from Tx

    "So think about it very carefully. We need a miracle right now."

    Conceited much?

    August 26, 2011 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
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