Congresswoman Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, a Tea Party favorite, is the latest to officially enter the race for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination.
Here’s a quick review of some of the things we’ve posted about Bachmann in the past couple of years:
–In 2009 she found it “an interesting coincidence” that swine flu outbreaks seem to happen under “Democrat” presidents. She cited a previous outbreak in the 1970s under “another Democrat president, Jimmy Carter.” Unfortunately for her coincidence, that outbreak happened in 1976– under Republican Gerald Ford.
–She said Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the “Hoot-Smalley” Tariff Act, which helped cause the depression of the 1930s. In fact, it was the Smoot-Hawley Act, named after its two Republican co-sponsors, and signed into law by Republican Herbert Hoover in 1930.
–Relying on an unnamed Indian government source quoted in an Indian press report, she claimed that President Obama’s 10-day trip to Asia last fall would cost a staggering $2 billion, including the diversion of 34 Navy ships for security. The report wildly inflated the actual cost of the trip.
–She said she converted from Democrat to Republican after reading a “snotty novel called ‘Burr,’ by Gore Vidal.”
–She compared America’s alleged loss of “economic liberty” to the Holocaust.
You can see other dubious (or worse) claims by Bachmann here.
Update: And speaking (as some do) about politicians’ relationships with dubious and extreme religious figures and movements…
Further update: At his New Republic blog, Jonathan Chait writes:
One pseudo-fact from last night that’s worth pointing out, as it’s sure to recur many times, is Michelle Bachmann’s claim that the Congressional Budget Office estimated that the Affordable Care Act would destroy 800,000 jobs. I wrote about this in February. The short answer is that CBO found nothing of the sort.
CBO estimated that 800,000 people would leave the workforce because they no longer would need to work in order to get health insurance. Under the status quo, it’s very hard for people who aren’t elderly or poor enough to qualify for Medicaid to obtain health insurance. Some of those people would like to retire, or work part time, but cannot due to the need to get employer-provided insurance. The Affordable Care Act would liberate them. The Republican budget would force those 800,000 people who otherwise have the means to retire or work on their own to work for their health insurance. Freedom!
And of course some of those 800,000 will be free to spend more time with their families.
Republicans like to pretend they stand for personal freedom and family values. Snicker.