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Welcome to the debut of my newest feature entitled “Taking Back The House:  2014”.  I’m aware of the current truth that mid-terms are not a good time for the incumbent President’s party.  We all remember what happened in 2010 and are unlikely to forget that night anytime soon.

However, I remain an optimist in the sense that the low popularity of the House Republicans will hurt them.  They are the party in power in the House and the wave that rode them to sweeping electoral victory, will be more subdued two years later.  When the Tea Party catches wind that some of their favorites voted for the “fiscal cliff” deal and have yet to do a thing other than obstruct, it might get fairly ugly for the GOP.

Or so we hope.

When I was thinking of how to start this feature, my brain immediately settled on one candidate that could signify what I’d aspire to get done.  I support a House in which most of its members do their jobs and are rarely known to anyone other than their constituents.  Of course, that’s impossible but when a candidate puts their political aspirations above their people (which is all-too-common on both sides of the aisle), they will be put on blast.  When regression, not progression, is the ultimate goal; they will deserve a spot here.

So who signifies that better than Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann.  Representing Minnesota’s 6th district since 2006, Bachmann probably deserves no introduction for all the headlines she has very proudly generated.  Yet, let’s take a look at the legislative, electoral and overall career of Michele Bachmann.

Legislation:

  • Bringing up, for the 34th time, the repeal of the Affordable Care Act.
    -If there could be anything that will automatically earn you a place on this spot, it’s actions like these.  The ACA is the law of the land and slowly become more integrated into our health care system.  The fact that this cannot essentially get repealed until 2017 is noteworthy.  This is a bill that’s created to throw “red meat” to national conservatives and to generate some early headlines.  It’s a waste of time that could be used to well….stonewall other bills and make John Boehner weep but time nonetheless.  
  • The Light Bulb Freedom of Choice Act
    -This Bachmann’s other signature piece of legislation, another one that is advocating a repeal and another one that was not enacted.  The Light Bulb Freedom of Choice Act would signify the repeal of the government ban of incandescent light bulbs.

Headlines:

  • Founder of the Tea Party Caucus
  • Notably went on Hardball With Chris Matthews and encouraged investigations to determine if members of Congress were “anti-American”.
  • Won Ames Straw Poll in 2011 which would lead to her collapsing in polls and dropping out of the presidential race the day after the Iowa Caucus.
  • Claimed President Obama wanted to enact Sharia Law in America.
  • Claimed Huma Abedin was part of the Muslim Brotherhood.
  • Member of the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence even though she has no foreign policy credentials.  

Electoral History:

2006: Bachmann (R): 50.1%, Patty Wetterling (D): 42.1%, John Binkowski (I): 7.8%
2008: Bachmann (R): 46.4%, Elwyn Tinklenberg (D), 43.4%, Bob Anderson (I): 10%
2010: Bachmann (R): 52.5%, Taryl Clark (D): 39.8%, Anderson (I): 5.8%
2012: Bachmann (R): 50.5%, Jim Graves (D): 49.5%

Cook PVI:
R+7

Prospects:

I would say that this list should begin with Jim Graves, who gave Bachmann the closest run for her seat.  Graves is a small-business owner and a local Minnesotan who nearly won even by being outspent from 10:1 margin.  To learn more about Graves, check out his bio on his website here.

I believe that he is the best contender though I would like to hear what somebody from Minnesota might know.

Why We Can Do This:

The district is pretty significantly Republican but Bachmann has barely crossed over 50% of the vote, even in the tidal wave that was 2010.  Now, she is an amazing fundraiser but her reputation is so well-known that I don’t think money can erase all the obstruction she has done in the House.  Bachmann has reached her ceiling, it appears, so what the DFL of Minnesota might have to do is make this a very local race considering Bachmann is a highly national figure.

The fact that Bachmann has difficulties staying north of 50% gives us hope in 2014.  Fundraising for the opponent could be a national exercise and if started early enough, we could see some good results.

Remember if Bachmann is out of politics, it would be a huge blow to the Tea Party and our sanity.

To sort of paraphrase her, “Repeal and Replace Bachmann”.

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