Bachmann accuses Perry camp of 'stealth' political attack
October 28th, 2011
08:54 PM ET
11 years ago

Bachmann accuses Perry camp of 'stealth' political attack

(CNN) - Michele Bachmann accused Rick Perry's presidential campaign Friday of a "stealth" political attack - a charge the Texas governor's campaign flat out denied.

"If Gov. Perry has something to say to me, he can come out to the debates and say it," Bachmann said in an interview with CNN. "But this is egg on the face unfortunately for the Perry campaign."

At issue: tea party sponsor American Majority's urging for Bachmann to drop out of the presidential race. On Thursday, the group's executive director Matt Robbins told CNN that Bachmann's White House bid "is not a serious presidential campaign." His comments coincided with a blog statement from American Majority president Ned Ryun, who outlined reasons why "it's time for Michele Bachmann to go."

Among other claims, Ryun wrote that Bachmann's emphasis on social issues was damaging the tea party movement.

In an interview with CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer," Bachmann fired back, targeting the Texas governor.

"Well, of course, we found out that this is really a misstep on the part of the Perry campaign because these are Perry supporters that came out," Bachmann told CNN. "This was a clumsy move."

Bachmann continued: "This was meant to be a stealth move to make it look like this was tea party."

"It certainly isn't a blow to my campaign because I've had nonstop support coming out of the woodwork from tea partiers all across the country ever since this came out," she said.

When asked whether Bachmann had evidence that the Perry campaign was involved in American Majority's statements, Bachmann replied, "No."

"This is something that people have told us," Bachmann said.

Both American Majority and Perry's campaign deny they were working together.

"We learned about this from news reports today. We were not aware or involved in the group's action," Perry campaign communications director Ray Sullivan said in a statement to CNN.

The group's president called Bachmann's assertion "bizarre."

"I have no connection with the Perry campaign," Ryun told CNN, although he did publicly express support for Perry's tax plan revealed earlier this week.

Ryun also said it's "wildly illegal" for his nonprofit group to endorse a candidate.

"American Majority does not endorse. I'm not working for or with any campaign," Ryun said.

"It goes back to let's focus on the substance of what this whole debate was about to begin with. Where are your substantive ideas to actually advance the ideas of the tea party movement?" he added.

–Follow Shannon Travis on Twitter: @ShanTravisCNN

Watch The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer weekdays at 4pm to 6pm ET and Saturdays at 6pm ET. For the latest from The Situation Room click here.

soundoff (357 Responses)
  1. Marques

    Just drop out

    Both Bachmann and Perry really don't need the tea party or anyone else to tell them to drop out. Their undesirable, unacceptable and extremely poor performance on the campaign trail dictate that they both drop our of the race.

    Bachmann is very ignorant and ill-informed about important issues, but continues to put her foot in her mouth. Perry is not only ignorant and ill-informed, but has not yet developed basic skills of speaking and communication.

    The longer they stay in the race, the more they harm themselves and expose their ignorance, stupidity and 'not ready for prime time' status.

    Both should actually drop out immediately!

    October 29, 2011 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  2. Frank

    Her paranoia exceeds her ignorance, which is really saying something!

    October 29, 2011 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  3. BeverlyNC

    Bachmann dear- NO ONE cares enough to waste time destroying your already dead and over campaign. Let's hopethe people inMN have been embarrassed enough by you NOT to send you back to Congress in 2012 where you will continue to do NOTHING but take our taxpayer moneyto keep your we hate gays clinic open.

    October 29, 2011 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  4. bdgfn

    Michelle Bachman, Rick Perry, Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney, Herman Cain...better campaigners for President Obama's reelection campaign than anyone Obama could have ever hoped to find!

    October 29, 2011 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  5. bu

    More recklessness. Just what we need in a 'leader', right? She should just go do a talkshow for a living and call it a career.

    October 29, 2011 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  6. Thomas

    Bachmann's support is "coming out of the woodwork", is it? That makes sense. That's where termites and worms like to live.

    October 29, 2011 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  7. Baye

    Bachmann's assertion is "bizarre" because ... well because Bachmann is bizarre. But what's even more so is that sooooo many people would vote for this lady. American democracy has become a circus freak show.

    October 29, 2011 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  8. Kathy

    If she spent half as much time studying domestic and foreign policy as she appears to spend on getting her nails done she might occasionally say something worth listening to. Guess that ain't happening anytime soon.

    October 29, 2011 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  9. blf83

    If this is the best we can expect from a paranoid, schizophrenic, fundamentalist candidate, her 2% will soon be a minus 10%. Give it up Michelle, we do not believe you have what it takes to be president – or, for that matter, representative.

    October 29, 2011 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  10. John

    She IS truly the most representative candidate of the Tea Party – a mental pygmy.

    October 29, 2011 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  11. Jack in Florida

    Michelle, it is not a stealth attack, it is called an implosiun. Once you open your mouth, you sabotage your on campaign. Go back to MN and hopefully they will vote you out of office.

    October 29, 2011 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  12. Jamey Carothers

    I am sure that Bachman understands that if Perry did something "stealth" to you it was only because God told him to- and that effectly ends that story. As far as the tea party wanting her out of the race she must also know that although the TP may say one thing- the truth is they know she is unlectable outside of her district and while they also hate Romney, they understand that she is sucking the fruitcake vote away from Perry. And the only Perry can maybe defeat Romney is for Bachmman and Cain to bow out of the race.

    October 29, 2011 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  13. candycane

    This all boils down to $$$$$!! Michelle Bachmann has run out of $$$$$!!! Rick Perry has Millions$$$$$!!! ! It's a slippery slope out there, Michelle! I'm afraid your Tea Party friends just threw you under the bus!! !

    October 29, 2011 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  14. Annie, Atlanta

    One piece of good news buried in this article. If Bachmann has had non stop tea party support "coming out of the woodwork" for her across this country, there certainly can't be many baggers, given her numbers. That's a good thing. I'm not big on right wing extremism, like we saw with Palin's toxicity. We have enough tearing us apart, without this nonsense to boot.

    October 29, 2011 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  15. CSM

    Lady, you have ZERO CHANCE!.. just as much as your Republican rivals... You are TOO EXTREME... Being anti gay, etc.. WILL NOT HELP YOU!

    October 29, 2011 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  16. Annie, Atlanta

    @Tim in MN – well, at least enough to make a difference. How she even wound up as a candidate for president is beyond my wildest imaginings. It certainly doesn't say much about us, ultimately.

    October 29, 2011 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  17. RINO Bil

    Getting tired of this clown's whining. She is getting more shrill as time passes and her numbers go down.

    October 29, 2011 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  18. independent voter

    She isn't even a threat to perry so why would he even care if she quit or not??? What an idiot she is!

    October 29, 2011 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  19. Bill

    I wrote a comment about 4-hours ago. Not nasty, no swear words, just an opinion on Bachmann and Perry. My comment is still awaiting moderation. I have come to the conclusion that the moderators, the proponents of this blog site, have their own agenda. If you write a comment that doesn't agree with their view, or worse yet, doesn't agree with the particular slant they want the public to see, and that slant may be deceptive, it does not get posted. Whether this gets posted or not, I am going to E-mail this post to Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity for their comment.

    My earlier post: Just an observation. The Republican race was fairly civil until Perry got in the race. I for one do not like the guy. I do not think he has the "presence" or "temperment" to be president, and I think that another president coming out of Texas will not be well received by the electorate in 2012. While it may be time for Bachmann to bow out, it is past time for Perry to do so.

    October 29, 2011 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  20. porchhound

    Trying to follow Perry's campaign is like making your way through a coal mine with a firefly in a jar.

    October 29, 2011 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  21. Oldie in TampaBay

    ROFL .. the parade goes on ..

    October 29, 2011 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  22. Aeromechanic

    Anything that gets these knuckleheads fighting each other is OK in my book.

    October 29, 2011 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  23. Kevin

    "Keep secularism and religion out of politics, really stop the earmarks and put the country first."

    Keep secularism out of politics? Secularism is the only reason religious freedom even exists. Maybe you just misspoke, or maybe you need to look up a definition or two. Keep secularism IN politics; take religion out.

    October 29, 2011 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  24. Rich

    I think Michelle may have "voices in her head" but being a big tea party girl it figures.Maybe the Koch bros "told her this"

    October 29, 2011 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  25. boyamidumb

    I have never been more embarrassed to be an American than I am now. Our government, our corporate structure, our supposed leaders are all something that have made this country something we can no longer be proud of.

    It is time for the people to take responsiblity for what we have allowed to happen and use what is left of the system and peaceful means outside the system to get us back on a track that will once again make the U.S. a country people want to be joined with.

    My parents did a much better job than we are doing today.

    The "greatest generation" may be the last we can be proud of.

    October 29, 2011 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
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