May 29th, 2013
07:45 AM ET
10 years ago

Rep. Bachmann looks forward to 'limitless' future, but not in the House

Updated Wednesday 5/29 at 10:30 a.m. ET

(CNN) - U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, a conservative firebrand whose bid for president last year ended after the Iowa caucuses, will not seek re-election to her Minnesota congressional seat in 2014.

Making her announcement in a video posted to her campaign website early Wednesday, Bachmann stressed she had no plans to fade from public view.

"Looking forward, after the completion of my term, my future is full, it is limitless, and my passions for America will remain," she announced.

Bachmann, who's in her fourth term representing Minnesota's 6th District, promised that there "is no future option or opportunity" that she "won't be giving serious consideration if it can help save and protect our great nation for future generations."

Bachmann staved off a tougher-than-expected challenge for her seat last November against Democrat Jim Graves, winning re-election by just under 5,000 votes. Graves has announced he will seek the seat again in 2014.

In her video announcement, Bachmann said her decision was not influenced by any concerns about winning reelection.

"I've always, in the past, defeated candidates who were capable, qualified, and well-funded. And I have every confidence that if I ran, I would again defeat the individual who I defeated last year, who recently announced that he is once again running," Bachmann said.

Nor was her decision based on any concerns over an ongoing congressional ethics inquiry into the improper transfer of campaign funds, Bachmann said in her video. She is also facing a Federal Election Commission complaint about her former presidential campaign.

"This decision was not impacted in any way by the recent inquiries into the activities of my former presidential campaign or my former presidential staff," she said. "It was clearly understood that compliance with all rules and regulations was an absolute necessity for my presidential campaign. And I have no reason to believe that that was not the case."

Bachmann's run for president in 2012 reached its peak in August 2011, when she beat out a slate of other candidates to win the Ames Straw Poll in the early voting state of Iowa, where she was born. Her campaign lost steam in the fall to other conservative candidates like Rick Perry, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum, and she eventually placed sixth in the first-in-the-nation Iowa caucuses. She ended her presidential bid the next day.

In the eight-minute long video, Bachmann, an early supporter of the Tea Party movement, touted her work on a variety of conservative issues, promising to "to work vehemently and robustly to fight back against what most in the other party want to do to transform our country into becoming, which would be a nation that our founders would hardly even recognize today."

Bachmann was one of the leading supporters of the emerging tea party movement in 2010, founding the "tea party caucus" in the House of Representatives and delivering her own "tea party response" to President Barack Obama's State of the Union address. Most recently she organized a tea party rally on Capitol Hill protesting the Internal Revenue Service's admitted targeting of conservative groups applying for tax exempt status.

In her video, she said she wouldn't let up on the causes she championed as a U.S. representative.

"I promise you I have and I will continue to fight to protect innocent human life, traditional marriage, family values, religious liberty, and academic excellence," Bachmann said.

In a polite statement, National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Rep. Greg Walden wrote Bachmann "has been a tireless advocate and dedicated Representative for the people of Minnesota’s Sixth District."

"Michele was the first Republican woman elected to represent Minnesota in the U.S. House of Representatives, and she has worked hard each day to ensure that her constituents’ voices are heard in the halls of Congress," he continued.

Democrats were less laudatory - the House Majority PAC, which works to elect Democrats to Congress, wrote Bachmann's decision was "good news for the people of Minnesota and our nation."

"Bachmann voluntarily removing herself from Congress is a victory we can all celebrate today," the group's executive director Alixandria Lapp wrote.

CNN's Kevin Liptak and Martina Stewart contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2014 • Michele Bachmann
soundoff (885 Responses)
  1. Ken in MD

    "Bachmann stressed she had no plans to fade from public view." She's following in the path of Sarah Palin. Time to make some money on the book/speaking tour. Tea baggers will be lining up to hear her. Nobody else will care.

    May 29, 2013 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  2. ptw

    I wonder if she thinks that quitting will make the investigation go away. I hope it doesn't.

    May 29, 2013 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  3. vidal808

    My goodness – what a splendid day to weak up and see the News :). Good bye Michele and Good riddings and, yes, FOX will have a spot for you at the table of loonies......

    May 29, 2013 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |

    YAH!!!! One less wack job in Washington.

    May 29, 2013 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  5. Zed

    What, no pic of her chowing down on that corndog?

    May 29, 2013 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  6. Jay

    Go on you liberal haters....she's a good woman.....

    May 29, 2013 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  7. onelesscomedian

    It's difficult to imagine a more craven and misguided politician. Glad she's leaving. I'll say one nice thing, though: Bachmann endured ENDLESS sexist commentary from both parties, and she did so with grace. Things that were said about her would never have been said regarding a male politician. Like Hillary or Nancy Pelosi, many of her detractors took the lowest, most sexist road possible in attacking her.

    May 29, 2013 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  8. beezers

    She's served four terms.... that means her salary from Congress is limitless... and that's why our country is broke. We're still paying Bill Clinton his presidential salary while he makes a million dollars any time he speaks.... this system is ridiculous!

    May 29, 2013 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  9. MilitaryAF

    Oh Darn! Someone in the GOP needs to give Sarah Palin a heads-up. They need a clown for the next election!

    May 29, 2013 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  10. Steve Allard

    The Fox News dysfunctional family will grow once again as she joins their payroll.

    May 29, 2013 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  11. little tin god

    Unfortunately, Ken in MD, you're right. There are enough idiots out there that would buy a book by Bachmann and believe all the idiot things she would say in it, taking them as gospel. Also unfortunately, Bachmann will remain in Minnesota and continue to make a complete fool of herself and continue to be a complete embarrassment to Minnesotans.

    May 29, 2013 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  12. bob

    She's a DINGBAT,useless person for soceity

    May 29, 2013 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  13. korkea aika

    She's retiring with great health care for life. But beware gay people out there, she'll have more time on her hands.

    May 29, 2013 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  14. Edward_S

    Just hope she doesn't go to fox. Both political parties will be looking at that state now. GOP might loose their grip on the house.

    May 29, 2013 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  15. Patrick

    The district that elected her will elect another wingbat. Just you watch.

    May 29, 2013 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  16. Nsikan

    Will miss that voice!!!

    May 29, 2013 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  17. Revolution

    Liberals let govt do the thinking for them as you can tell from posts

    May 29, 2013 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  18. Veeblefester

    She's going to be home all of the time now? I would imagine her husband's conversion therapy will wear off soon after.

    May 29, 2013 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  19. Boater

    Made my day.... One down....

    May 29, 2013 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  20. Kannan

    people at comedy channel will be dis appointed.

    May 29, 2013 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  21. Jon

    Don't let the door hit you on the way out and GOOD RIDDANCE. What an idiot.

    May 29, 2013 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  22. Bismarck

    This woman is a real nut case. Can't wait for her to completely disappear

    May 29, 2013 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  23. emskadittle

    I think the word she was think of was limited

    May 29, 2013 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  24. SC

    Thank You So Much.

    May 29, 2013 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  25. Mercury

    Bachmann. Turn her over. Drive.

    May 29, 2013 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
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