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Our Guide to the Best Coverage on Rep. Michele Bachmann and Her Record

A rundown of the stories you need to read about Rep. Michele Bachmann. She has held the title of Tea Party favorite thus far in the campaign, but what about her actual record? 

Republican presidential candidate Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., addresses the Blackhawk County Republican Annual Lincoln Day Dinner on Aug. 14, 2011 in Waterloo, Iowa. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

This is the latest installment in a series of reading guides on 2012 presidential candidates. Here are the other guides.

The basics:

Though she certainly has a challenger in Texas Gov. Rick Perry, Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann has held the title of Tea Party favorite thus far in the presidential race, touting her opposition to abortion and same-sex marriage, support of "intelligent design," and rejection of the scientific consensus that human activity is a leading cause of global warming.

A detailed profile in The New Yorker tracks both her career steps and her deeply religious background. Bachmann's first job after law school was working for the IRS, an agency she once called "the most heartless organization that anyone knows of." As both The New Yorker and the Minneapolis Star Tribune note, she worked mostly on cases that were settled and rarely litigated. (The Star Tribune reported two minor cases, The New Yorker one.) She recently said on a campaign stop that she went to work at the IRS "because the first rule of war is 'Know your enemy.' "

Many of her major career and life decisions have been made, she says, according to visions, prayer and directions by God. Bachmann said that God gave her and her husband, Marcus, a vision of marrying each other. She's said that God "called us to take foster children," and went on to take in 23 in addition to the couple's five biological children. As she was running for Congress, Bachmann said that "God then called me to run for the United States Congress." And in May, she said in an interview with Iowa Public Television that she'd also "had that calling" from God to run for president.

Her record:

Bachmann spent six years in the Minnesota Senate and is serving her third term in the U.S. Congress. In July, then-presidential-contender Tim Pawlenty, a fellow Minnesotan, criticized Bachmann's legislative accomplishments in Congress as "nonexistent."

PolitiFact checked Pawlenty's attack and found it to be mostly true — Bachmann has never sponsored anything that became law. The congresswoman "seems to prefer offering legislation that makes a bold statement" and "does not have many legislative victories under her belt," PolitiFact concluded.

You can check GovTrack for Bachmann's recent proposed legislation, including bills to make the Bush tax cuts permanent, repeal the Dodd-Frank financial reform bill and repeal the phasing out of incandescent light bulbs (the Light Bulb Freedom of Choice Act).

In recent days, Bachmann has touted her role in the debate over raising the debt ceiling. "I've been the leading voice, almost the lone voice in the wilderness of Washington, fighting against raising the debt ceiling," she said in an interview with NBC's "Today" show.

Bachmann's role consisted mainly of breaking with GOP leadership, denying that default was a possibility, and saying she would refuse to raise the debt ceiling unless President Obama's health-care law was repealed.

When the rating agency Standard & Poor's subsequently downgraded the nation's credit rating, she called the president "AWOL," "missing in action," and said, "It happened on your watch, Mr. President," arguing that S&P's downgrade decision proved her right.

PolitiFact rated that assertion false. In fact, S&P had cited "political brinksmanship" and failure to compromise as a primary reason for the downgrade.

Despite her hawkish stance on fiscal issues and her criticism of government spending, many news reports have noted that she's benefited from such spending. Bachmann proposed more than $60 million in earmarks while serving in the Minnesota's Senate and more than $3.7 million since joining Congress, The Daily Caller noted. While she supported the GOP's supposed earmarks ban, she also argued that "advocating for transportation projects for one's district in my mind does not equate to an earmark," the Star Tribune noted.

And while criticizing the Obama administration's stimulus spending in public, Bachmann often sought those funds in private, writing letters repeatedly to administration officials seeking funding and support for projects in her district, The Huffington Post reported.

At the same time, Bachmann has received what may be questionable criticism for introducing a bill to build a $700 million bridge to replace an aging bridge connecting Minnesota and Wisconsin. While some have criticized the proposal as destructive to the environment, others have labeled it an earmark even though Bachmann's proposal sought no federal funds.

Bachmann and her husband also have a stake in a family farm that has received nearly $260,000 in federal subsidies over the years. Though she's asserted that she hasn't received income from the farm, the Los Angeles Times notes that her financial disclosures show otherwise.

Her recent promises:

Bachmann has become known for her sweeping promises. "Under President Bachmann you will see gasoline come down below $2 per gallon again," she vowed this week.

She has also been creative with her promises.

"President Bachmann will be canceling barbecues if we see the markets going down," she said this month after the Dow Jones industrial average plunged on Obama's birthday.

Still others advance her social agenda. "The 'don't ask, don't tell' policy has worked very well," she told CNN recently, noting that if elected president, she'll consult with military officials but "probably will" reinstate the policy.

Bachmann has also promised to shutter the Environmental Protection Agency, which she's decried as the "job-killing organization of America." The New York Times quoted her as saying in Iowa: "I guarantee you the EPA will have doors locked and lights turned off, and they will only be about conservation."

Controversies — and unfair criticisms:

Bachmann has been involved in her fair share of controversies but not all of her making. A report last month by The Daily Caller noting that Bachmann has severe migraines and alleging that she "takes all sorts of pills" for them got played up by the D.C. media until Bachmann released a letter from a doctor verifying that the migraines were infrequent and controllable.

Newsweek recently put an unflattering photo of her on its cover, prompting a torrent of complaints that the cover was sexist.

Bachmann often makes headlines for her minor gaffes, such as mixing up Elvis' birthday and death-day, confusing John Wayne the actor with John Wayne Gacy the serial killer, and otherwise botching references to American and world history.

Her husband's counseling clinic, as many have noted, has been a center of more significant controversy. Former patients have come forward alleging that the clinic practices "reparative therapy" to change the sexual orientation of gay men and women. Marcus Bachmann has previously denied that his clinic does that, although he's also compared gay people to "barbarians" who "need to be educated," CNN reported. His wife's campaign has refused to comment on the matter in recent days, citing "patient-client confidentiality."

Following the money:

Bachmann's campaign has been funded largely through small donations — at least when compared with her GOP rivals. You can check some of her top contributors on OpenSecrets.org.

Earlier this month, her supporters launched a super PAC, Citizens for a Working America, which would be able to accept unlimited donations from individuals and corporations but must operate independently of her campaign.

...I got nothin’.  I mean, sure, she’s less cartoonish and idiotic than Bill Clinton or George W. Bush, but…wow.

On the other hand, it’s sort of dirty pool to bring her husband into the discussion.  What does Perry’s wife think about gay people, for example?  That’s right, we don’t care.  Tipper Gore wants censorship, and it never came up in Al’s campaign, and that should be a little higher on the list of worries (it being a Consitutional thing) than personal opinions of gay people, no matter how bigoted they might be.

Oscar R. Buergis

Aug. 24, 2011, 12:07 p.m.

Is Mrs. Bachmann now running for President of the U.S., or will she be the top priest of the nation?

Please note this blog post on Bachman: 
<http://martinshushu.blogspot.com/2011/06/2012-pageant-of-politics.html> 
Cheers to all at ProPublica,
Martinshushu

Jon Huntsman is so far the best candidate the Republicans have. At least he can speak Mandarin and is towards the center.This is coming from a Democrat.

Barry Schmittou

Aug. 24, 2011, 12:14 p.m.

If God is really directing Bachmann then she should take action on the evidence that I am submitting to her office today !! Obama leads prayers while protecting the following deadly organized crimes :

WFAA-TV in Dallas wrote this about Workers’ Compensation :
“a remarkable number of Texans committed suicide because they could no longer endure the pain caused by their injuries and they had been repeatedly turned down for worker’s comp care.”

In the disability case of Ms. Brenda Zanny, U.S. District Judge Richard Enslen wrote :

“Metlife and its henchmen should appreciate that such conduct may itself precipitate the suicide death of a person who has placed implicit trust in their organization. This record is an open indictment of MetLife’s practices and treatment of the mentally-ill and long-term disability benefits.”

Quotes from numerous Federal Court Judges prove multiple insurance company Doctors’ ignore life threatening medical conditions including Brain lesions and Multiple Sclerosis, cardiac conditions of many patients, and a foot that a new mother broke in 5 places.

Multiple Judges prove MetLife is also very fond of endangering Psychological claimants lives !!

Obama’s DOL and DOJ Directors have seen this evidence but will do nothing to stop these crimes even though the patients may die before their case is heard by the Courts !!!!

The quotes can be seen at the following website
deadlyorganizedcrimes.blogspot.com

The crimes are so bad Professor John Marshall Law School Professor Mark Debofsky wrote :

“empirical evidence is now available that shows insurers operating under ERISA have systematically engaged in the wrongful denial of claims. Cases of abusive benefit denials involving other disability insurers abound.

You can see how identical crimes are being committed by multiple insurance companies in five different types of insurance by going to treasonevidence.blogspot.com

The huge issue is the widespread destruction of lives, and the fact that the U.S. Government is protecting these criminal insurance companies !!!!!!

God please help us all, and we would appreciate help from Congresswoman Bachmann too !!

What is astonishing to me is that instead of moving forward we appear to clearly be moving backwards. De=evolution anyone?

The last thing we need is a religious fanatic of any stripe running this country. We elected one in G.W. Bush twice, if you can believe it.

What happened to rational conservatives? I want them back please before it is too late.

As the un-official spokesmen for the rest of the world….We are scared.  Scared that a nut-job as far out as Bachmann has any constituency at all let alone a large enough one to make her a contender for the nomination.

I found it difficult to believe that she was ever elected as a congress person, now this!  The USA has a serious case of the crazies and needs to seek medical help immediately!

The problem isn’t Bachmann, she is just a reflection of the electorate.  THAT is the scary part.

I voted for Obama but I’m on the fence about him now; however if she were to get the GOP nomination I will vote for Obama just because I feel she poses a huge threat to the constitution and freedoms we have fought for and earned over the years.

Propublica, Your liberal leanings are showing too much on this one . We were downgraded because number one , S&P saw that we did nothing substantial toward eliminating our debt. They listed number two, non-cooporation between the executive and legistaltive branches. Please don’t spin this any other way.

Is there any way you can find an uglier picture of her?

Stephanie Palmer

Aug. 24, 2011, 12:56 p.m.

So the woman is a hypocrite and a liar. Not really much different than the other candidates.  If she had to make a decision, would she pray and wait for an answer from God?  God might be a little busy at the time.  Like with the starvation in Africa, or the war in the Middle East - or something like that.  Would we have to wait for God to take care of those things before she got the word?

No surprise that Koch Industries is one of her backers, no wonder she wants to shut down the EPA and doesn’t believe in global warming.  Another “Tea Party” puppet.

Barry Schmittou

Aug. 24, 2011, 1:07 p.m.

I have just contacted Congresswoman Bachmann’s office in Woodbury, MN

I mentioned this ProPublica article and my comment above that has evidence of organized insurance company crimes that have been committed by multiple insurers and protected by Directors of the Bush and Obama administrations who reviewed the evidence and took no action.

I mentioned that Obama and Bush did take huge campaign contributions and issue multiple Non Prosecution agreements to four insurance companies who rigged bids to increase sales of these policies, BUT they are continuing to kill and destroy claimants who file claims on the policies as mentioned in my comment above.

For evidence of this I referred her to bidriggingandhealthcarefraud.blogspot.com

I talked with the assistant for eight minutes and I mentioned that Ms. Bachmann feels directed by God, and I pray that I am.

I said I believe that anyone who is directed by God or is a good person in general, especially someone with political power, would certainly do everything they can to stop insurance companies and doctor’s they pay from ignoring brain lesions, Multiple Sclerosis, cardiac conditions, a foot a new mother broke in five places, and attack multiple Psychological patients as evidenced at deadlyorganizedcrimes.blogspot.com

I also referenced treasonevidence.blogspot.com as proving multiple insurance companies are endangering claimants in five types of insurance while Obama and Bush’s DOL and DOJ protected them !!

There are many tremendous comments made on ProPublica articles. I hope and pray that you will consider taking action and calling Congresswoman Bachmann’s office and requesting action on the evidence I’ve presented. Her number is 651-731-5400

(I have called three of Congressman Paul’s offices in the last week, and spoke to two assistants and left one message referring them to the ProPublica article and my comment that has criminal evidence)

You can also call Republican Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn and ask her to help. I’ve made several requests over the years and have had no response, no call back, nothing !!

The same is true for Senator Lamar Alexander !!

Blackburn’s number is 931-503-0391

Multiple insurance companies are endangering claimants in five types of insurance, every average citizen is in great danger, because Obama and Bush’s DOL and DOJ protect the deadly criminals !!

Thank you ProPublica for making information like this easily available. An informed population helps us all. I do hope the candidates are reading and noting what is being reported. I can’t take Mrs. Bachmann seriously as a candidate despite the fact that I would like to see a woman as president. We need a much better option than this.

Michele Bachmann works well to draw votes from the large number of disenfranchised working Americans with little understanding of the complexities of our countries economic problems. She would make a great puppet for the powers that be(bankers et al). With her as president we could expect four more years of status quo.

As a card carrying liberal, who is not getting more conservative as he gets older, I reject the stances of Michele Bachman and the other Republican candidates.  I’m a ‘yellow-dog Democrat;’ I would rather vote for a yellow dog than a Republican.  One thing I avoid in public discourse is name calling, which appears on all of these types of sites.  Though I may call Bachman and the rest names in private, I reject their use in public., All that in mind: Michele Bachman is a danger to our American way of life, a way of life based on the Constitution and Bill of Rights.  The good news is that she will not get close to the ‘Big Chair,’ let alone the nomination of her party.  Just isn’t going to happen.  It’s way up in the air who will be the Republican nominee
Though Ihave not seen much reference to her feelings on Roe v. Wade, as an abortion oppenent, I am certain she opposes it and would direct her Justice Department to try and overturn it.  Even our ultraconservative Chief Justice John Rodgers has said that it is ‘settled law,’ not to be revisiited.
As a retired history teacher, no card though, I cringe when she makes the gaffes she makes. No one is perfect, but her gaffes are contnual.  It was Concord, Massachsetts and J.Q. Adams was 9 years old during the Revolutionary War.  Commentors write these gaffes off as ‘Bachman being Bachman,’ which is surely the truth.  But can we afford a President that makes those kinds of gaffes? No!

you can build the beast but it will come to eat you eventually, as the republicans have now noticed.

Barry Schmittou

Aug. 24, 2011, 2:18 p.m.

When politicians claim their connection to God they should be challenged and my evidence is the perfect challenge !!

(Congresswoman Bachmann’s office number is 651-731-5400)

Most Christians believe we will sin until we die, but we must try to sin less and follow God’s word and will as much as a human can.

If Obama and Bachman and the rest are really trying to be Christians there is no way they can ignore :

(1) many injured workers killing their self,

(2) an injured war Zone Contractor with his leg, toes and fingers blown off having his wheelchair and bed repossessed because CNA insurance cancelled payment on a check,

(3) and quotes from numerous Federal Court Judges that prove multiple insurance company Doctors’ ignore life threatening medical conditions including Brain lesions and Multiple Sclerosis, cardiac conditions of many patients, and a foot that a new mother broke in 5 places.

Whenever you hear a politician say they are Christian or spiritual in any way please pick up the phone and call their assistants and legally and spiritually challenge them with the evidence I’ve presented at :

treasonevidence.blogspot.com
deadlyorganizedcrimes.blogspot.com
and bidriggingandhealthcarefraud.blogspot.com

(Congresswoman Bachmann’s office number is 651-731-5400)

(Congresswoman Blackburn’s number is 931-503-0391)

Track their action, post your action in comments about the candidate, and if you are a Christian like me tell the candidate you are concerned about their soul if they join Obama and Bush in protecting the deadly organized criminals who are CEO’s and leaders at multiple insurance companies !!

Of course there are many crimes being protected that my evidence does not cover such as the lack of prosecution on the global meltdown etc., but whatever the evidence you present, when candidates mention or use Christianity in their speeches, their actions need to prove their sincerity !!

I am trying to be a Christian as I struggle to survive; I sin daily but I’m trying to do better. I have not seen one National politician whose actions indicate they believe in the love of Jesus !!

I pray they will see the light, and I pray this will be resolved so no one else will have their lives destroyed !!!!!

I’m with Philip Elenko regarding Jon Huntsman.  I have been an Independent for over 20 years.  I have voted for Republicans in the past but this latest iteration of the GOP is way too nutty for my taste.  Depending on the composition of the House and Senate (as in, whether or not the GOP is likely to control either chamber), I would consider Huntsman.  If it looks like GOP control in either chamber, is likely, I would vote for Obama to cancel out the nuts.  A sad state of affairs, but here we are.  Regarding Bachmann, she does not believe in evolution, which is a deal breaker to anyone who passed 7th grade science.  Imagine some poor GS-15 trying to explain derivatives trading to her.  She was recently on “Meet the Press” (where we are still stuck with the late Tim Russert’s lazy, glib replacement, David Gregory), and Bachmann lied to Gregory’s face regarding receiving federal farm subsidies.  He simply moved on to the next topic.  He should have had her annual federal disclosure forms in front of him when he asked that question (in fairness, he may have).  In my view, all of the GOP candidates are either crazy or pretending to be crazy except for Huntsman who looks like a giant among these pygmies.

Barry Schmittou

Aug. 24, 2011, 2:38 p.m.

Max, before you vote for Obama please look at treasonevidence.blogspot.com and bidriggingandhealthcarefraud.blogspot.com

His Directors have seen the evidence and done nothing !!

Corporations can rig bids to sell policies and then cause the deaths of thousands of claimants and they get multiple Non Prosecution agreements.

I’m not a repub, I almost voted for Obama, but now I pray for his indictment !!

I respect your decision, but hope you and everyone else is aware of the evil he enables.

Thanks, Barry.  Too bad they won’t let us take hard liquor into the voting booth anymore.  Recent admissions of SEC document shredding is in play as well.  I think Obama’s biggest mistakes have involved coddling the big banks.  I’ll have to dig out my old, “Someone Stop Me Before I Vote Again” bumper sticker for this one.

Barry Schmittou

Aug. 24, 2011, 3:07 p.m.

Thank you Max : )

I just started following Matt Taibbi’s Rolling Stone stories about the SEC shredding.

The corruption is so closely connected.  In 2006 the Securities Exchange Commission wrote :

“AIG will pay in excess of $1.6 billion to resolve claims related to improper accounting, bid rigging and practices involving workers’ compensation funds.”

That was at the exact time period that WFAA - TV in Dallas wrote :

WFAA-TV in Dallas wrote :

“a remarkable number of Texans committed suicide because they could no longer endure the pain caused by their injuries and they had been repeatedly turned down for worker’s comp care. Some insurance companies send peer review doctors medical files “stripped” of records important to the possible approval of workers’ comp claims.”

On the same day that MetLife signed their non prosecution agreement for bid rigging to increase sales of health related policies Prudential, and Unum insurance also received Non Prosecution agreements for bid rigging group health, disability, life and related policies.

As I mentioned in a recent Court document sophisticated corporate mafias are in control of the U.S.

I still cannot believe how open the crimes are. I love America and I think we are in great danger.

Debbie Trudeau

Aug. 24, 2011, 3:19 p.m.

FYI, Chief Justice is John Roberts, for those of you appalled by gaffes.

Perry and Bachmann are everything that is wrong with this country.

marcus needs to be brought into the limelight as bachmann said she was subservient to her husband.

No one is voting for marcus. She’s bad enough but why would be want two loonies for the price of one?

Barry Schmittou

Aug. 24, 2011, 4:52 p.m.

The ProPublica link to Bachmann’s Christian calling has some interesting quotes from Bachmann who said :

“And in the midst of that calling, God then called me to run for the United States Congress. And I thought, what in the world would that be for? And my husband said “You need to do this.” And I wasn’t so sure. And we took three days, and we fasted and we prayed. And we said “Lord, is this what you want? Is this Your will?” And after—along about the afternoon of day two—He made that calling sure. And it’s been now 22 months that I’ve been running for United States Congress. Who in their right mind would spend two years to run for a job that lasts for two years? You’d have to be absolutely a fool to do that. You are now looking at a fool for Christ. This is a fool for Christ.”

(end of quotes)

I am concerned that statements like those last two sentences might turn some people away from Jesus. But maybe it was great enthusiasm and maybe that helped some people.

I’m a struggling Christian and full of flaws and praying God will help me believe correctly, but I’m not running for President.

I’m certain when people mention God as much as Congresswoman Bachmann and others do they can’t turn their backs on the big business deadly crimes that I’ve presented to Mrs. Bachmann. I’m waiting to hear from her and Congresswoman Blackburn who should also represent me !!

Here’s the link that ProPublica posted above and it has a video of Bachmann making those profound statements :

http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/05/bachmanns-prayers-answered-ive-had-that-calling-to-run-for-president.php

Devils Advocate

Aug. 24, 2011, 6:34 p.m.

“Many of her major career and life decisions have been made, she says, according to visions, prayer and directions by God.”

She was talking dog. Not God. Not only is she psychotic, she’s dyslexic.

God, please stop calling!

I personally do not support her as a candidate. But I do not see that she should withhold from asking for money from the stimulus just because she opposes it. Same with Ag support for the family farm. We can all be against something but if it is passed by the majority and we are eligible to receive it then we should if we so choose. It is out there and our competitors will be asking for it, and this puts our state, district or family business at a disadvantage not of our making by refusing it.

Michelle Bachmann is an honest, intelligent and a Conservative candidate I could easily support as a presidential contender. 

All of the criticisms Ms.Wang makes of her are minor compared to the atrocities that BObama has done to this country. We have 10% unemployment, businesses have their hands tied and are leaving because of regulations from his Czars, nations all over the world are laughing at us, our military strength has been diminished, and I doubt his golf game is any better.

Let’s hear some of the research journalists find some information about Obama’s health records, his past affiliations with religion, his records from his schooling, his reason for having more than one SS #, when he changed his name from several aliases to finally settling into Barach Hussein Obama, his lies made during his campaign that have been proven to be lies since his presidency, and a few of his over 100 unconstitutional Executive Orders made since he took office.  What about “57 states”, “all bills will be on C-Span”, not placing his hand over his heart when the National Anthem is played, “everyone will get to keep their own insurance plans”, and on and on and on?

Because Mrs.Bachmann attributes her life choices to God is not a bad thing.  We all live our lives under God’s will and the fact that she is honest enough to recognize and state such is commendable. The fact that none of what she has proposed has been made into law is not surprising, since the Republicans in Congress are only 1/5th of the whole governing body.  When Liberal journalists talk about compromise they only consider the compromises that Republicans are supposed to make to the Democrats.  Yet the Democrats make minor insignificant ones expecting Republicans to give into any and all Dem. ideals.  The Republicans did not cause the Credit Rating of this nation to drop.  They offered a plan; Cut Cap and Balance, that Standard and Poor’s would have liked and that would have kept our Credit Ratting at it’s highest.  Instead the Dems. in the Senate tabled it.  To date the Dems have not balanced the budget (since Obama took office), or offered a plan to control the budget.  The Dems have been in charge of all (until 2010) or 4/5ths of the government since 2007.  This country is not in trouble because of the Republicans or the Tea Party people.  It’s been getting “progressively” worse (from $4 trillion to $14 trillion) since 2007

I am sick and tired of the one sided reporting that is mistakenly called journalism!

Sandy, what are you talking about re: Obama? Obama walked into office and into a terrible mess that was not of his making but of Bush’s. We actually have been recovering but its slower than people want of course. It was said by economists that this recession was going to take a long recovery time. Obama should not be blamed for this and he has done a lot of good things. World leaders respect him, they did not respect Bush very much. He captured Bin Laden and was directly involved with calling the shots. His decisions regarding Libya were accurate. No one entering the White House is going to be perfect. The world is too crazy and the problems too intense. Lets not, however, forget that the Republicans were the ones in power for the eight years prior to Obama and he walked into their mess, he did not create it.

jeanne,

Sounds to me like Obummer can do no wrong in your eyes!

I can tell you this NO ONE can say anything good about Libya right now. Just because the idiot is gone does not make the country great now. Wait until we see if they can get together and agree on who is going to run the place first to say Obummer has done a good job.
I have worked in the middle east, saudi arabia, oman, dubai, kuwait for the last 20 years and can pretty much guarantee that there is a lot of misery to come there for years now.

There was an article on Decision Fatigue last week in the New York Times and I realize the republican’s game, by having so many non-contenders, is keeping the press busy covering people who do nothing but diss President Obama and keep the rest of us preoccupied with trivia.  Thanks, ProPublica for keeping us informed about the details of candidates.  Hopefully we can get the word out to family and friends just before the primaries when it will really make a difference in how they vote.

“We all live our lives under God’s will” -Sandie

I understand that for you this is as obvious as the nose on your face and it is a truism that you can’t imagine being questioned.  But for me that statement has NO MEANING whatsoever.

I guess this author never looked into Obama’s past when he was a candidate. His record of voting “present” whenever anything was proposed is not exactly inspiring. His 2 1/2 years as President has taken us down a rocky road from which we may never recover.

Next to Jimmy Carter, he is the worst example of a President that we have had in decades. We need a grownup who can stop whining and blaming everything from George Bush to the tsunami in Japan for his failures. We need a leader who is willing to make tough decisions and stop playing games.

The insults and name-calling from some of your commentors only show what liberals are capable of. They dislike any mention of God or religion and demean anyone who has a strong faith. Where were they when Obama’s Rev. Wright was screaming epithets from his pulpit? I guess that’s okay with the libs.

I believe that these so-called journalists and other libs are afraid because the Annointed One has not followed through on any of his promises and they have been proven wrong. This guy is a phony and so are they.

Maybe all of the visions and the migraines are connected…her doctor really should send her for an MRI…some sort of growth on her brain would explain a lot.

Getting a message is better than claiming “I’m the one,” at least in my book.
Thanks for this series.  I hope you continue through all the candidates.

I was going to be done with this string of comments, but I read Jeanne’s comment and simply must disagree with her.  The Democrats took over control of the Congress in 2007,  It was they who made all of the decisions…..you know….Barney Frank saying Fanny Mae and Freddie Mac are doing fine and there is no concern…....  All President Bush could do was veto.  Also Presidents do not make laws, at least not until Obama started making his unconstitutional side stepping of the Congress.  Presidents are only to enforce them.  To say that Bush was the one who created the “mess we are in”  is a misrepresentation of the truth.  From 2007 to 2010 the Dem.s were the policy makers not the Republicans.  I agree that Bush made some, as have all presidents before him, but he is not worthy of the “it’s Bush’s fault” campaign that the Dems ran on in 2008 and have been running on ever since.

As far as Obama calling the shots on the Osama Bin Laden killing, that is very disputable.  For weeks those pictured in the famous picture of BO in the room watching the invasion wanted to proceed with this plan , but Obama’s “brain”, Valarie Jarot, kept telling him not to do it.  Obama was probably pulled in off the golf course kicking and screaming to be there in the room to say do it.

I ask everyone I know who voted for BO to name one thing that he has done that is good for this country and no one is able to do anything but shout insults to those of us who are not Liberals.  I guess when you have no positive actions to point out, name calling is your only alternative.

Sandy

You hit the nail on the head. And if you look at the mortgage and wall street mess, I believe that most of the regulation changes took place under Slick Willie.

Bush, whom I supported and still do, cost us a BUNCH with his Iraq fiasco. Saddam was of no threat to anyone, save some of his close neighbors, If truth was known I believe that would be more Bush’s advisors war than his.

Afghanistan, that was needed because of 9/11. But as always we went with no clear goal and now find ourselves bogged down. We need to decide what the goal is, go after it whole hog, then GET OUT!! Again we are spending a fortune for very little, if any, results.

Sandy, lets estimate that 9/11 cost the terrorist 4 million dollars to pull off. The US response to 9/11 IS…i repeat IS President Bush’s call…mostly. You can easily figure the Iraq and Afghanistan wars will end up costing, in the long run, including veteran care, 3 to 4 trillion dollars. Thier were much better options for responding to 9/11 even without hindsight. Bush’s problem was he had the worst advisors in Rumsfeld, Woflowitz and Cheney and cowboyed us into quagmires.

And this is just monetary expenses, add in the US casualty list, wounded, disabled etc.

Add in the millions of Iraqis displaced and lives ruined for decades, killed by insurgents, etc.

Yes, you denegrade Carter and Obama, well your choices of good Presidents tells a lot.

...by the way, somebody above commented Propublica picked a terrible picture or her…for political bias.

Though I would never vote for Michelle Bachman, I have a lot of respect for her as a candidate especially when comparing her to pseudo candidates like Sara Palin, Donald Trump etc.

And she looks stunning in this foto as she just about always does.

Kenneth Cantrell

Aug. 29, 2011, 10:27 a.m.

It is astounding that people like Bachmann and Perry ignore science and instead retreat to prayer.
The failure in this type of thinking is readily apparent after Mr. Perry’s “Pray for Rain” debacle earlier this year,
Mrs. Bachmann is of the lunatic fringe as well. We should expect, nay, demand more from our representatives.

“The invisible and the non-existent look very much alike.”
-DB McKown

Charles Kennedy III

Aug. 30, 2011, 8:14 p.m.

Here are more than 50 of the least controversial accomplishments.  We would disagree on his appointment of Supreme Court Justices and the Affordable Health Care Act and his economic actions.

1. Instituted enforcement for equal pay for women
2. Began the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq-[almost finished;]
3. Families of fallen soldiers have expenses covered to be on hand when the body arrives at Dover AFB
4 Ended media blackout on war casualties; reporting full information
5. Ended media blackout on covering the return of fallen soldiers to Dover AFB; the media is now permitted to do so pending adherence to respectful rules and approval of fallen soldier’s family
6. The White House and federal government are respecting the Freedom of Information Act
7. Instructed all federal agencies to promote openness and transparency as much as possible
8. Ended the previous stop-loss policy that kept soldiers in Iraq/Afghanistan longer than their enlistment date

9.. Phasing out the expensive F-22 war plane and other outdated weapons systems, which weren’t even used or needed in Iraq/Afghanistan

10. Federal support for new biomedical research
11. New federal funding for science and research labs
12. States are permitted to enact federal fuel efficiency standards above federal standards
13. Increased infrastructure spending (roads, bridges, power plants) after years of neglect
14. Funds for high-speed, broadband Internet access to K-12 schools
15. New funds for school construction
16 The prison at Guantanamo Bay is being phased out (to the extent Congress permits him)
17. US Auto industry rescue plan (and yes it is a success)
18. $789 billion economic stimulus plan—I waffle on this one b/c it was too small.
19. The secret detention facilities in Eastern Europe and elsewhere are being closed
20. Ended the previous policy; the US now has a no torture policy and is in compliance with the Geneva Convention standards
21. Better body armor is provided to our troops
22. The missile defense program is being cut by $1.4 billion in 2010
23. Restarted the nuclear nonproliferation talks and building back up the nuclear inspection infrastructure/protocols
24. Reengaged in the treaties/agreements to protect the Antarctic
25. Visited more countries and met with more world leaders than any president in his first six months in office
26. Successful release of US captain held bySomali pirates; authorized the SEALS to do their job
27. US Navy increasing patrols off Somali coast
28. Attractive tax write-offs for those who buy hybrid automobiles
29. Cash for clunkers program offers vouchers to trade in fuel inefficient, polluting old cars for new cars; stimulated auto sales
30. Announced plans to purchase fuel efficient American-made fleet for the federal government
31. Expanded the SCHIP program to cover health care for 4 million more children (some of us think helping the poor is a good thing)
32. Signed national service legislation; expanded nat’l youth service program
33. Instituted a new policy on Cuba, allowing Cuban families to return home to visit loved ones
34. Expanded vaccination programs
35. Immediate and efficient response to the floods in North Dakota and other natural disasters
36. Closed offshore tax safe havens
37. Negotiated deal with Swiss banks to permit US government to gain access to records of tax evaders and criminals
38. Ended the previous policy of offering tax benefits to corporations who outsource American jobs; the new policy is to promote in-sourcing to bring jobs back
39.. Ended the previous practice of protecting credit card companies;  new consumer protections from credit card industry’s predatory practices enacted;
40. Energy producing plants must begin preparing to produce 15% of their energy from renewable sources
41. Lower drug costs for seniors
42. Increased pay and benefits for military personnel
43. Improved housing for military personnel
44. Initiating a new policy to promote federal hiring of military spouses
45. Improved conditions at Walter Reed Military Hospital and other military hospitals
46 Increased student loans
47. Increased opportunities in AmeriCorps program
48. Sent envoys to Middle East and other parts of the world that had been neglected for years; reengaging in multilateral and bilateral talks and diplomacy
49. Established a new cyber security office
50. Began the process of reforming and restructuring the military 20 years after the Cold War to a more modern fighting force; this includes new procurement policies, increasing size of military, new technology and cyber units and operations, etc.
51. Ended previous policy of awarding no-bid defense contracts
52. Ordered a review of hurricane and natural disaster preparedness

For such a pro military President Bush sure ignored the needs of the soldiers.  Remember the Walter Reed scandal.  You should!

Barry, get some real, professional help, please.

This article is part of an ongoing investigation:
Buying Your Vote

Buying Your Vote: Dark Money and Big Data

ProPublica is following the money and exploring campaign issues in the 2012 election you won't read about elsewhere.

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