Queen of the Tea Party The presidential campaign of Michele Bachmann

If you’re interested in knowing your candidates, this article is a detailed chronology of Michele Bachmann’s life. Read it all and you will see how strong she really is.

Excerpt: What Bachmann lacked until recently was mainstream credibility. And the skepticism was bipartisan. Democrats loathed her—and still do—because she’s about as far from an apologetic conservative as you can get. But plenty of Republican officials and consultant types also didn’t like Bachmann. Republican elites muttered that she was a show horse, not a work horse. Her fame alienated colleagues. One congressman recently told me that Bachmann had been upbraided during a House GOP conference meeting for undermining the leadership’s message on fiscal issues. Bachmann’s tendency to shoot from the hip is said to limit her appeal. “I think Bachmann’s chances of landing on Jupiter are higher than her chances of being nominated,” Republican strategist Mike Murphy told me in an April interview for Washingtonpost.com.

Well, get ready for an interplanetary expedition. Bachmann is a far more serious candidate for the Republican nomination than her reputation would suggest. She’s a talented fundraiser who raised $13.5 million for her 2010 reelection campaign. She’s a television star who appropriately tailors her message to her audience. Her combativeness will delight conservatives eager to fight Barack Obama. Her movement credentials—she founded the House Tea Party Caucus—put her at the cutting edge of right-wing politics. And in a primary campaign where authenticity counts, no other candidate has Bachmann’s unique history: an Iowa native who put herself through law school, raised her five children and took in 23 foster children, and has never lost an election for state or federal office.

Since 2009, millions of Americans have attended rallies, joined Tea Party groups, and become involved in politics. They’re scared for the future of the country, and they want to stop America’s decline. Many of these activists are parents or grandparents who simply weren’t political before government policies drove them into the arena. Michele Bachmann is uniquely positioned to speak to these voters—because she’s one of them.

Read full Weekly Standard article here.

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