At left: Cover of The Madness of Michele Bachmann by Ken Avidor, Karl Bremer and Eva Young.
Michele Bachmann's presidential campaign is history. Those of us who planned elaborately-amusing blog posts making fun of her husband's pray-away-the-gay therapy are profoundly disappointed. I was looking forward to at least a few more weeks of the Michele-and-Marcus follies. Gone after the Iowa caucus? She can't even make it to New Hampshire? Lightweight!
Bachmann placed sixth in Iowa. How Michele Bachmann went bust is explained by Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post:
What happened in the 144 days between those two dates was a mix of bad luck, bad strategy and a candidate who opted for a national rather than Iowa-focused campaign, according to a series of conversations with former strategists and advisers to the Minnesota Republican. That series of factors created a potent concoction that left Bachmann out of money and options less than 24 hours after the first vote of the 2012 presidential primary.What's next for Michele Bachmann? asks Alex Pareene of Salon:
“At the end of the day, voters liked her but didn’t see her as the party nominee or their president,” said Ed Rollins, Bachmann’s one-time campaign manager. “She didn’t make the sale.”
Michele Bachmann, a deeply deluded and irresponsible religious fanatic who until this week was apparently seriously running for president of the United States, has slunk back home to her oddly shaped Minnesota congressional district to brood on her future.What I wanna know is, how did we ever get stuck with this person on the national stage? People like this are usually consigned to the outback, aren't they? How could anyone take her seriously as a presidential candidate?
Politico declares her a “lock” for reelection, but that depends on whether or not she runs. She effectively promised not to, but that promise may have been predicated on her remaining a legitimate presidential candidate. (Minnesota law prohibits running for two federal offices at once.)
Bachmann is not a lock because she’s particularly beloved in her district — as longtime Bachmann critics have been at pains to point out to the national media, she never wins Stillwater, her district’s largest city, and she has tended to win tight races with help from third-party spoilers — but because she is hugely popular outside her district, with a nearly endless supply of Christian right cash.
It’s fun (“fun”) for political observers to imagine her going up against Sen. Amy Klobuchar, but that would be nuts even for Bachmann. If she couldn’t beat Ron Paul in Iowa among Republican voters, she’s not going to win a statewide election in more-liberal Minnesota against a popular incumbent.
Pareene mentions that:
It has been honestly disturbing to watch as a woman who was a local joke when I left Minnesota years ago rose to become not just a larger joke but then suddenly a national figure of some influence and seriousness, and that her rise was abetted by precisely the qualities that made her a joke in the first place — her vicious small-mindedness and bigotry and self-evident idiocy — is what makes people deeply cynical about the intelligence and decency of Other Americans not like themselves, to the detriment of our politics. So to see her roundly rejected is cause for some small celebration, even as hateful troll Rick Santorum rides his resentment-fueled momentum into the next contests.We could never get that lucky... although I think she'd be great on a reality TV show: Praying Away The Gay with Michele and Marcus.
So, honestly, who cares what Bachmann will do next? The future Bachmann deserves is one of total obscurity. It would almost be appropriate if this avowed “non-politician” remained an uninfluential absentee House of Representatives backbencher. Though it’d be much more satisfying if, say, Minnesota legalized gay marriage and Marcus divorced her to marry Ted Haggard at a wedding officiated by Keith Ellison.
Bachmann may not be making any detailed plans for the future, considering that she believes she’ll be raptured away any day now, which both I and her apocalyptic death cult would likely agree would be a good thing for all involved.
Oxygen network? Lifetime?