Is it just a coincidence that Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann announced that she would not run for reelection about 10 minutes after Minnesota became the 12th state to vote for marriage equality? Is it possible that May 15 — the day of the vote in Minneapolis — actually broke my Michele? Banning marriage to those she does not approve of has been the focal point of a career spent calling for spiritual warfare against the evils of same-sex marriage.
“You see if we retreat from our values and fail to make the case on issues like marriage — because it is one man, one woman — because God said it is,” she proclaimed at a conference. “Not because it’s poll tested — because God said it is.” (Recently, three religious educators debunked Bachmann’s claim in a new and well-researched report. Not that facts matter to pure ideologues.
Anyway, with Minnesota’s legislators having voted with their conscience and their hearts, I wonder if my Michele cried that night, cried for all the gays who will get married and destroy America and destroy all those heterosexual marriages. I mean, we’ve seen that happen in the states that have legalized gay marriage, right? Man-woman marriages suddenly exploded! Fell apart! Destroyed! I know I’m being sarcastic!
No, what probably happened was that my Michele — realizing that her husband, Marcus, is as gay as Liberace as rumored — realized she was in a gay marriage herself and that it was working!
No, I’m kidding. Who knows the actual reason she decided not to seek a fourth term. Her rambling Facebook video was as incoherent as we have come to expect from her. She said, “The law limits anyone from serving as president of the United States for more than eight years, and in my opinion, well, eight years is also long enough for an individual to serve as a representative for a specific Congressional district.”
Non. Sense. If my Michele thought she could win a fourth term, I have no doubt she would have tried. This is a woman who relishes the spotlight and tries to get in front of the cameras as often as possible. This is a woman unafraid to say exactly what is on her mind and does not fear the consequences of her, at times, insane remarks.
But I do believe there are two reasons she is staying home after this term is up. The first reason is Jim Graves, the Democrat who came thisclose to beating Bachmann in 2012, losing by only 4,300 votes while being outspent 12 to 1. Graves’ decision to run against her once more in 2014 evidently spooked a woman clearly not used to losing, or fearing losing. There is no doubt that this time Graves was poised to beat my Michele soundly and the Democratic Congressional Committee was licking its chops over a Graves-Bachmann rematch.
But then, upon hearing of Bachmann’s decision, Graves caved. He told the Minnesota Post,
“Basically, after all that’s gone on, and with Michele Bachmann now stepping down, I’ve been talking to my friends and family and frankly, the feeling is, ‘Mission Accomplished.’ She wasn’t representing the people of the 6th District appropriately, and now she won’t be representing them. There’s no way anyone could run and win who would be worse than Michele Bachmann. So we accomplished that task.”
(Note to George W. Bush: That is how one uses the term “Mission Accomplished.”)
The second reason Bachmann is not running for reelection is the FBI investigation into the finances of her 2012 presidential campaign, specifically payments to an Iowa campaign aide and Iowa state Sen. Kent Sorenson (R), as well as the improper use of Bachmann’s PAC funds to pay for the political director of that campaign. She, of course, denies all wrongdoing.
And speaking of doing wrong, Bachmann kept very busy during her three terms on both the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (oh, the irony) and the Committee on Financial Services, and of course she is the founder of the House Tea Party Caucus. These activities must have kept her too busy to actually legislate because in her three terms as a Congresswoman, she actually didn’t do anything.
Wait, I exaggerate. Since joining the House in 2007, Bachmann has sponsored or co-sponsored 58 bills. One — to repeal Obamacare — passed the House, but none were signed into law. What a record to beat!
Indeed, my Michele hasn’t spent all her time trying to get nothing done, she has also spent time saying the most outrageous and crazy things! This is why she is my Michele, ma belle. This is why I love her and will miss her style of say-anything-now, prove-it-later. She was a refreshing and fascinating look at the inside of a truly disturbed individual. From her assertion that God told her to marry her husband to her claim that the HPV vaccine causes girls to become mentally retarded, she was the gift that kept on giving.
Here are a few of my all-time-favorite Bachmann quotes:
On Melissa Etheridge:
“Unfortunately she is now suffering from breast cancer, so keep her in your prayers… This may be an opportunity for her now to be open to some spiritual things, now that she is suffering with that physical disease. She is a lesbian.”
“And again, don’t misunderstand. I am not here bashing people who are homosexuals, who are lesbians, who are bisexual, who are transgender. We need to have profound compassion for people who are dealing with the very real issue of sexual dysfunction in their life, and sexual identity disorders. This is a very real issue. It’s not funny, it’s sad. Any of you who have members of your family that are in the lifestyle — we have a member of our family that is. This is not funny. It’s a very sad life. It’s part of Satan, I think, to say this is ‘gay.’ It’s anything but gay.
“…It’s profoundly sad to recognize that almost all, if not all, individuals who have gone into the lifestyle have been abused at one time in their life, either by a male or by a female. There’s been profound hurt and profound things that have happened in almost all of their lives” lives.”
On The Lion King:
“Normalization through desensitization. A very effective way to do this with a bunch of second graders is to take a picture of The Lion King for instance, and a teacher might say, ‘Do you know the music for this movie was written by a gay man?’ The message is: I’m better at what I do because I’m gay.”
On Climate Change:
Bachmann calls climate change “all voodoo, nonsense, hokum, a hoax.” She also cast doubt on the entire field of climate science. At a town hall in her district, Bachmann informed constituents that climate science is not “real science” but “manufactured science.”
On the Minimum Wage:
Bachmann explains her opposition to the state’s minimum wage as a form of job creation: “Literally, if we took away the minimum wage — if conceivably it was gone — we could potentially virtually wipe out unemployment completely because we would be able to offer jobs at whatever level.” I guess a dollar an hour is good?
“What I would say is that the news media should do a penetrating expose and take a look. I wish they would. I wish the American media would take a great look at the views of the people in Congress and find out if they are pro-America or anti-America.”
On Obamacare killing everyone:
“That’s why we’re here: Because we’re saying let’s repeal this failure before it literally kills women, kills children, kills senior citizens…. Let’s not do that. Let’s love people. Let’s care about people. Let’s repeal it now while we can.”
On Comparing Iraq to the Mall of America:
“[T]here’s a commonality with the Mall of America, in that it’s on that proportion. There’s marble everywhere. The other thing I remarked about was there is water everywhere.”
On Terry Schiavo:
“[She] was healthy. She had brain damage — there was brain damage, there was no question. But from a health point of view, she was not terminally ill.” (An autopsy found that Schiavo had suffered irreversible brain damage and her brain, said the medical examiner, was “profoundly atrophied.”)
On President John Quincy Adams, son of Founding Father John Adams and dead before Lincoln:
“But we also know that the very founders that wrote those documents worked tirelessly until slavery was no more in the United States. …I think it is high time that we recognize the contribution of our forbearers who worked tirelessly — men like John Quincy Adams, who would not rest until slavery was extinguished in the country.”
“Where do we say that a cell became a blade of grass, which became a starfish, which became a cat, which became a donkey, which became a human being? There’s a real lack of evidence from change from actual species to a different type of species. That’s where it’s difficult to prove.”
So now my Michele will join the likes of Sarah Palin, where a Facebook page is a broadcast outlet. I will keep my Google alert on her and check in on her activities and silliness. I look forward to her next job, too, although I doubt Roger Ailes will make the same mistake with her that he did with Palin. No more million-dollar gigs for pretty crazy ladies.
Oh Michele, we had a good run. There will never be another like you and for that I am grateful.
Oh, and good luck on your gay marriage.