Bachmann afternoon update: She's still crazy, Tinklenberg loves it
This story just gets better by the hour. Rep. Michele Bachmann continues to speak on air in an attempt to "clarify" her statement, but in reality continues to dig herself a deeper hole to crawl into.
Watch the video and hear what the Minnesota Democrats have to say after the jump.
The Minnesota members of Congress released a joint statement today, denouncing the views expressed by Bachmann and expressing their embarrassment. The following statement may be attributed to Sen. Amy Klobuchar, Rep. James Oberstar, Rep. Collin Peterson, Rep. Betty McCollum, Rep. Keith Ellison and Rep. Tim Walz:
"For Michele Bachmann to go on national television and say that Members of Congress should be investigated for 'anti-American views' calls into question her judgment and her ability to work in a bipartisan way to put the interests of our country first in this time of crisis.
"Like Colin Powell, who called Bachmann's comments 'nonsense,' we are embarrassed by her comments.
"All Members of Congress -- Democrats and Republicans -- swear an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States and for Michele Bachmann to question their loyalty is outrageous.
"We pride ourselves in Minnesota on our clean and civil elections, but Michele Bachmann's comments run entirely counter to that tradition. All Americans, regardless of their political beliefs, should reject these kinds of divisive, inappropriate and unacceptable comments."
We can't seem to find an embedded version of Bachmann's Fox9 Alix Kendall interview from this morning, but the video is up on their Web site.
Here is the transcript for the tech-impaired, courtesy of Minnesota Independent:
This weekend your campaign said your statement was misunderstood. So what did you mean to say exactly?
What I'm concerned about as this election is going forward is the appalling lack of curiosity that the national media has about Barack Obama's views and about the view that we're going to have from Congress if we have a radical liberal in the White House and liberals controlling both the House and the Senate.
Barack Obama is ranked the No. 1 most liberal senator in the United States, Nancy Pelosi is the head of the House, Harry Reid is the head of the Senate. We have never had this concentration of liberal leadership in Washington, coming up this November, if this is what the result of the election will be."
Does being liberal mean that you are anti-American?
No. I appreciate this opportunity because I'm hoping people will look at the context of the full interview. Because I did not suggest anti-American, Chris Matthews used the word "anti-American" and asked me to respond to it.
So what I was telling Chris Matthews is that the media needs to look at Barack Obama and the media needs to look at members of Congress.
(Matthews) wanted to know if I thought that members of Congress were anti-American, and what I told him was that that's not up for me to decide -- the media should make that expose -- that's not my call.
So this has been completely misconstrued to say that I believe members of Congress are anti-American. I never said that. I said the media should look into it.
I also didn't say that Barack Obama is anti-American. What I said is that the media should look into his views.
And that's what they're really upset about right now, because I'm calling on the media to take a look at what these positions are going to mean for people. I mean, after all, they haven't been silent about what they believe.
Barack Obama is calling for socialized medicine, radical increases in taxes. That's what Joe the Plumber was all about. Joe the Plumber asked Barack Obama about punishing tax increases and that's really the story that's going unreported right now.
What is being anti-American to you? Why don't you explain that?
Well, anti-American was Chris Matthews' comment, that wasn't me. He was the one that brought up anti-American -- I didn't.
I was talking about views that are very concerning to the American people, such as when Barack Obama said to Joe the Plumber he wants to spread the wealth around. But redistribution of wealth is a radically different concept on the economy than the current concept we have with the free market.
We want people to be able to make money, keep it, grow themselves in the middle class...that's what Joe the Plumber was concerned about and that's a complete difference if you look at what's going on with are economy, if you look at redistribution of wealth.
Gen. Colin Powell is backing Barack Obama. He denounced your statements as well as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Both say this is going too far, and apparently your comments...
It would be if that's what I said, but I didn't say it. What I'm saying is that I am concerned about what his ideas are and that the media needs to investigate them. And they have a deplorable lack of curiosity.
This is all good news for Bachmann's opponent, Elwyn Tinklenberg. Today he announced that their donations continue to grow at alarming rates. Since Bachmann's statement Friday, the campaign has raised $740,000 in online contributions. The Pioneer Press wonders if the campaign is a little too giddy. They spelled their own candidate's name wrong twice in their news release.