BLUFFTON, S.C. (AP) — Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann told a packed tea party gathering she doesn’t think President Barack Obama is “on our side anymore” as she blamed him for a “foolish” war in Libya and high gasoline prices.

Bachmann got a rock-star reception in a standing-room only crowd at the Bluffton Tea Party, entering as about 350 people sang: “Can you hear us now, sounding the alarm. … Can you hear us now, we the people.”

It’s a birthday weekend of sorts for the grassroots movement, and presidential hopefuls have fanned out around the country to keep their candles lit. Bachmann is on a four-day swing around South Carolina that started with a congressional campaign fundraiser here Monday and is capped with a Statehouse tea party tax day rally in Columbia.

The tea party groups sprang to life in the depth of the recession as Congress approved bailouts and stimulus spending bills that have increased the nation’s debt. They have made Obama and two-dozen U.S. Senate seats Democrats hold their top goals for the 2012 election.

Bachmann said a tea party movement that pundits say is waning is actually winning, citing polls showing Obama’s approval rating flagging.

“We’re winning. We’re winning. 2012 is entirely possible for us to send a change of address form to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue,” Bachmann said. “If the election were held today, Barack Obama would go down in flames, metaphorically speaking.”

Obama “has so much to answer for,” Bachmann said. When Bachmann said Obama was responsible for Wall Street bailouts, a man in the crowd stood and asked her where they began. She conceded they started with President George W. Bush, but Obama supported them.

Bachmann noted gasoline prices averaged $1.83 a gallon when Obama took office and the national average is now $3.79.

Gas prices in January, when presidents are inaugurated, are generally lower than in warmer months when more Americans travel. Anything from political turmoil in the Middle East to hurricanes can cause prices to fluctuate. The average price of gas in the second week of April during Bush’s last year in office was $3.44 a gallon.

“What’s President Obama’s answer?” Bachmann asked. “Well, after he started the third war in Libya, he went on vacation. And he went on vacation down to Brazil,” she said, where he encouraged the country’s offshore oil drilling and signed off on a $2 billion loan.

“Whose side is he on? I don’t think he’s on our side anymore. I really don’t think he’s on our side,” she said.

Bachmann railed against U.S. intervention in Libya, saying it came without establishing the United States’ interest, a threat, knowing what the mission would be and who would gain influence if the rebels won.

“The only reports that we have say that there are elements of al-Qaida in North Africa and Hezbollah in the opposition forces,” Bachmann said. “What possible benefit is there to the United States by lifting up and creating a toe-hold for al-Qaida in North Africa to take over Libya?” Bachmann said.

While Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi is a dictator controlling oil revenue, Bachmann said al-Quaida stands to gain “a permanent source of funding to finance global terror worldwide. Do you see how foolish this decision was that our president made?”

She didn’t mention Gadhafi’s own decades-long rap sheet on terrorism.

In the 1970s, he supplied weapons, training and safe haven to terrorists, including Italy’s Red Brigades and the Irish Republican Army. His regime was implicated in the 1986 bombing of a Berlin disco that killed two U.S. soldiers, as well as the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, that killed 270. In 2009, secret cables have shown Gadhafi offered to help U.S. counterterrorism efforts in Africa.

When asked about the Gadhafi’s background after what was billed as a voter registration event later, Bachmann recalled the Libyan leader’s history. “There’s no question that he has a deplorable past and that he’s been a funder of terrorism,” Bachmann said. “He certainly has been a bad actor.”

Still, she noted, Defense Secretary Robert Gates told Congress that Gadhafi had neither attacked nor threatened the U.S. while al-Qaida has tried to capitalize on the U.S. and NATO intervention.

As for hanging high gasoline prices on Obama, Bachman told reporters: “He hasn’t done anything to bring them down during the course of his presidency. The only actions he’s taken have been ones to actually escalate prices.”

Bachmann poured out love for South Carolina Republicans: Gov. Nikki Haley, U.S. Sen. Jim DeMint and five U.S. House members, including Joe Wilson, made famous by shouting “You Lie” as Obama addressed Congress in 2009. Noticeably absent in two speeches: Republican U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham, whose conservative voting record has remained overshadowed by deal-making with Democrats.

On Sunday, she has private meetings scheduled. She’s not expected to announce her candidacy before June. She is not committed to being on stage in the first GOP debate slated for May 5 in Greenville.

Bachmann wasn’t alone in courting South Carolina voters. Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour was making the GOP county convention circuit, where tea party activists have steadily gained influence and leadership positions.

On Friday, Barbour won the Charleston County GOP convention’s straw poll with 22 percent of the vote.

Bachmann placed a distant fifth with 9 percent. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney was second with 12 percent, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum had 11 percent and millionaire developer Donald Trump had 11 percent.

At the Lexington County GOP convention Saturday, Texas Rep. Ron Paul won the straw poll with 12 percent of the vote, followed by Romney and Trump at 12 percent and Barbour and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee at 10 percent. Bachmann placed in single digits behind former Godfather’s Pizza CEO Herman Cain, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty and former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

Barbour was the only candidate in waiting to attend those conventions and one in Richland County Saturday.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments (59)
  1. Shirley Moll says:

    Michele Bachmann is about as nuts as a person can be and she is DEFINITELY AN INSULT TO ALL WOMEN and that DEFINITELY INCLUDES ME.

    1. Dan says:

      You bleeding heart liberals think she’s nuts, look in the mirror. How much more do you need to see from the Obama administration to know this guy is a huge cancer for america? You libs just can’t stand the truth. Heres one for you to ponder, with socialism you eventualy run out of everyone elses money. Sounds like whats happining now by funding this money hungry government. Guess what my money is almost gone now so I will be looking for my free money from you guys untill your money runs out. Then where do we go for more money?????

      1. Aaand case in point... says:


      2. king says:

        Yea Dan , i can bet you been spending hard earned money on filling your big 4X4 gas tank. You had your chance to make things better but failed to do so.
        we all saw want Bush to our country, set us back forty years is what your Reps did.

      3. at Dan says:

        I’m a tight wad Republican and this witch is flat out flukken nuts. Crazy. Cerifiable as a Charlie Manson wanna be wacko.
        She is doing NOTHING positive, creating her brand of sensationalism that is so far out I’d vote for a McCarthy, Stalin,Hitler, wanna be anyday before this sicko.
        She’s hardly worthy of this rant but I cannot resist. 😉
        If the country is lucky she will have a typical Bachmann meltdown on a national stage, reach out to pat GWB’s back and instead grab his junk and rip his trousers off. He’ll spat on her. game over

    2. Ms Piggy says:

      I’d not fret her – she’s not a woman in any sense of the word so she shouldn’t insult you in any way.

      Now if you were a sow in the pen – she might I guess offend her kind. Even the sow just seem to ignore her other than when they toot or belch. That’s the sign of disinterest they show.

  2. St Paul says:

    The Republicans/Tea Party running for President in the next election are a mighty bunch. Bachman, Pawlenty, Trump, and perhaps Palin. Wow, it’s like the circus has come to town!!! This is going to be a blast folks!!!

    1. Jane says:

      It is obvious some people will actual vote for them and not see the joke, or they may vote as a joke not expecting them to win and they might. (Loud Scream!!!)

    2. king says:

      Yea, and Bachmann is brainless.

  3. jimbo says:

    Tea Partiers – please, please, please nominate MB as your candidate, it will be a landslide victory. Just not the way you intended….

    1. Romericus J Sims says:

      GOOD ONE JIMBO!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Bob says:

    She is entitled to her opinion but doesn’t this woman ever do any work for the voters in her district? She spends more tiime running around the country collecting funds from special interests and shooting her mouth off. 350? She is losing it. Last month she spoke at a rally in DC and she got about 250.

    1. Jeff says:

      I agree, how about taking that trio back to MN and finding out how the people in her district feel about the issues? There are big things happening, she should find out how her people feel. If you want to talk taxation without representation…..This is it at it’s finest.

    2. Lynn Karin Ness says:

      No..she doesn’t..I live in her district. On the other hand, I’d be afraid of what she would do for us!

    3. Bub says:

      Hey she is getting into the “big time”.

    4. prufrock says:

      She has done absolutely NOTHING during her time in “office,” other than grandstanding and whining about complete nonsense. She has definitely set the bar much lower, and anyone who would actually take her seriously as a candidate really ought to have to pass a basic IQ test, let alone have their sanity checked.

  5. Christy says:

    I have yet to hear what she would do to change things – the only things I hear are blame, blame, blame. Yeah, that’s impressive.

  6. MB is ok says:

    Man you are all hands-out liberals. How long are the effects of the kool-aid going to last? I bet not a one of you has ever broken the 50k barrier.

    1. Jeff says:

      It’s funny you say that, the avg pay is $42,000 a year. You know what that means? It means there is more of us than you. If you want to make more repulicans, pay us more! LOL oh right, rich want to stay rich and have to poo on other people to do it. Just you wait, Obama is going back for another four because the GOP can’t keep people like MB quite.

      1. Romericus J Sims says:


      2. MB is ok says:

        See Jeff the difference between you and I is I earn over $250,000 per year and it took me 9 years out of college to get to that level. Nine years, which means I’m in my 30’s and I’m just getting started and I felt it took about 4 years too long. You see hard work and a little smarts pays off. I did it without a single hand out, hand up or single red cent from anyone. I can hardly even remember when I only earned 42k. I honestly can’t understand why everyone isn’t in my boat. It wasn’t that hard, just hard work and no complaining. It is what my parents instilled in me along with conservatism. I really have to boil it down to simple laziness and poor choices that make so many people respond through the class envy lens. How dull and dreary must your life be that your aspirations are missing? It is funny how complaining never propelled anybody in this world. I have to guess you lose a lot of sleep when you are awake in the middle of the night realizing your choices have lead you into a life of envy. I’d rather get burglarized than have to deal with in your face thieves like you. You deserve what you endure.

        1. Defending the Wingnutz says:

          Well congrats MB is ok… Glad to see you paid your own way all the way through college just as I did.

          I simply chose to serve my country in uniform after I graduated from college. That was a 100% government handout. I hope you appreciated me defending your ability to get rich while I lived in substandard BOQ.

          You deserve a nutjob like Bachmann.

          1. MB is ok says:

            @Defending the Wingnutz, if I tell you I served during the first Gulf War, my dad is a decorated, injured Vietnam vet with 6 ak47 holes in him from his tours and both my grandfathers and multiple other relatives (all deceased now) served in WWII how do you respond? Remember the 4 years too long statement above? I’m not complaining about sustandard living conditions. Attitude is everything in this world and complaining, doesn’t get you the results you want. At the end of the day, the only difference between any success I have and others may not is initiative and drive and making good choices along the way. The success is there for the taking by everyone. Considering the conditions from which I came, nobody has the right to complain about the rich and not be one of them or at least on their way.

        2. prufrock says:

          And what a fine fellow you are, after all your self-direction! It must be awesome to sit on top and sneer at all those beneath you who are struggling to get by. You certainly are better than all of us regular folks are, by golly! I imagine that you are probably a Christian, too. We should all learn from someone like you as to how to fulfill Christ’s wishes while still being a pompous, selfish blowhard. (Actually, it doesn’t matter at all what your religious beliefs are; by any measure of character you are still a pompous, selfish blowhard.)

          As for “how complaining never propelled anybody in this world” it apparently has pushed a fool like Bachmann well into the spotlight. She has done nothing of substance, even on the State level, but has done plenty of complaining. It’s too bad that she cannot claim the total self-sufficiency that you advocate; she has soaked up over a quarter million dollars in Federal funds for her “business” property in MN.

          You are the poster boy for why people hate Republicans, by the way. You’ve had plenty of help along the way, courtesy of the taxpayers– the ones you disdain for their embarrassing lack of wealth and who pay the bulk of the taxes in this country. Without taxes, your life would never have had the joyful bounty you now brag so ruthlessly about, though you would gracelessly never admit it. You may be making 250K a year, but you are worth less than what comes out of the back of my dog.

    2. +$75k Lib says:

      I have, for quite a few years. You know what I think would be nice? If everyone else in this country who put in an honest day’s work could also make that much. Instead, the super rich line their own pockets while cutting employee jobs and benefits, and paying off politicians to increase their power while granting them tax breaks. And when people finally get fed up enough to shout for reform…

      …they swiftly get misdirected and misled by the politicians who are supposed to represent them. It’s the tea party’s own fault for not thinking harder or demanding more, but it’d be nice if they wouldn’t take everyone else down with them.

      (now watch this dope call me an elitist because I do make a decent living.)

    3. v says:

      MB…. My shoes cost more than you make in a year. Doesn’t change the fact that MB is a door knob.

  7. Douglas Agustin says:

    But isn’t she attractive? Would she have ever made as far as she has without her looks?
    Her own words, time after time demonstrate how ignorant and uninformed she is.
    I think it will be unlikely we will be treated to MS. Bachmann actually making it beyond much more than talking about running.
    SNL is already writing sketches!

    1. Bub says:

      Yep, T&A will get you almost anywhere. Remember Monica……..

    2. road says:

      My thoughts as well. Without her looks, she would not have made it out of the state. Our society right now values the pretty persons opinion more than anyone else, but, that will change.

      1. Ann says:

        But she has crows feet, that Should imply wisdom.

        1. Me says:

          No, MB’s crowsfeet imply a lack of common sense. Sunscreen and Oil of Olay have been around for years.

  8. PSS says:

    MB leader of the blame game rebublican tea party MORONS but acctually have NO clue has how to do anything productive ……………………..OBAMA 2012

  9. Run Michelle Run says:

    Run Michelle run!!!

    Please, please, please!!

  10. Murph says:

    Don’t get caught up in the hype people.In the future,if there is one.These prima donnas will be exposed and vilified as you are doing right now to some of those who are REALLY trying to help all of us. Opportunists come in all shapes and sizes.Unfortunately the dollar can buy a lot of hype but no so many groceries or gallons of gas these days..If I were a young man I might spend my days exposing those beyond ” Tiny” Tim. However as an old man all I can do is warn you.If you follow these deviant ones ,of extreme beliefs and methods.The consequences will too soon fall on you too!Soon you will sell all your belongings,cars and homes in order to eat and be warm.YOU too are the targets of evil,let no amount of vaudeville and rabble rousing dull you to exactly who is bankrolling these people and what their REAL desires are.If you are NOT are NOT… going to profit in any way shape or form. Vote the steady and future course that you must follow to survive,Not the falsehoods and false hopes that are given to you only to be taken away,much as what is happening today.Tommorrow if there is one,.. will be better or worse on your ultimate choice!

    1. The Crux of the Biscuit says:

      Absolutely correct Murph. Lots of people supporting people funded by right-wing extremists that only desire one thing, right wing dictatorship. After all, George Bush thought a dictatorship would be great, as long as he was the dictator. He even said so publicly.

  11. Joe Smoe says:

    I am from her district, and she is a total embarrassment to the people of Minnesota. What has she done for us here? NOTHING. This area is one of the richest in the country, and most of the poorer folks have been suqeezed out long ago. But I have to say, The incarceration industry is booming here, There is a State Prison, a Max prison, and a ridiculously huge new jail and government center. Expect more of the same if this nitwit gets elected.

    1. Romericus J Sims says:

      well she has been known to TALK LOUD AND SAY NOTHING

  12. John Henry says:


  13. juan says:

    Michelle Bachman is a racist that wants to bring back slavery

    1. Me says:

      That’s so untrue! Everyone knows the founding fathers ended slavery. Michele Bachmann said so.

  14. Romericus J Sims says:

    YEAH FOLKS…VOTE FOR MICHELE BACH”MANN” …talking loud and saying nothing for the last 10 years give or take. @ LEAST SHE GOT A TRACK RECORD OF SUCH

  15. fkafka says:

    What starts out as an AP news story quickly deteriorates into slanted opinion with remarks like “She didn’t mention Gadhafi’s own decades-long rap sheet on terrorism.” Pretty poor journalism.

  16. upnorth says:

    Back in the 60’s my dad said one had to be “light in the head” to listen to rock and roll. He of course was wrong and history was changed. However, if I was to say the same about the mouth here – who could argue? Has anyone heard any substance or just loud complaining? She is just a flash in the pan and will not change history.

  17. The Crux of the Biscuit says:

    Bachmann makes her living off of suckers voting her into office and then doing nothing for them. A perfect example of how ‘government is broken’. Want bad government? Vote Republican. They can PROVE government doesn’t work. Bachmann is a good example.

  18. lance says:

    I am not a bleeding heart liberal nor a fanatic right winger but Bachman just needs to go away. She says our president is not “on our side”–she means “not on my side”. Whether we agree with the Presidency or not, be they republican or democrat, they are still the president. You can disagree ( this is the U.S.) but to say that he is against “us’ is just wrong. To Michele, you are a good looking woman who, if it were not so, would get little press. And that you constantly are saying asinine, inane things in public makes your district and the state look like utter morons. She, along with nearly every politician, needs to be removed and be replaced with ones who will work to make the US better, not tear it down from within.

  19. helper says:

    Put the crack pipe down and get back to reality Bachmann.

    What an insult to MN

  20. X says:

    Please tell everyone what you would do, rather than telling everyone how bad someone else is doing a job!!

  21. Tears, Tea Pee and Depends says:

    she about ready to start wearing the things since she’s obviously dang near insane ___ just a simple minded Super Skank she is …. glad she now referes to Iowa as being her home.

    Anyone know how much these odd balls make from us taxpayers?

  22. Matt says:

    The Republican Party – The greediest 10% of the population using the dumbest 40% to get into power.

  23. Dan says:

    Just watch this and tell me who’s nuts. Eight million other people have. Time to open your eyes..

  24. betty says:

    Run Michelle, Run! The more you open your mouth and say nothing the more you are energizing the Left! Which I’m part of it!

    Thank you Michelle for re-energinz the left.

  25. Jackie Santopietro says:

    When GW was president Bachmann said it was unpatriotic not to support him. Funny how things have changed….

  26. Doing just fine and a lib too .... imagine that says:

    another Lib as a whole and combined we better than $296K – so to the putz above praising conservatism as the only way to succeed ….. he my dust boy.
    I pay taxes – plenty. Not a problem. And I am damn proud of the fact we DO NOT whine like little kids all day long about paying our fair share.
    kiss my behind lil’ doggy, kiss my behind.

  27. Tim says:

    All you socialist liberals do not have an idea how a job is created. Your tax and spend policies will drive this country to bankrupcy.