Bill Pulkrabek, Michele Bachmann's former campaign manager, faces domestic assault charge for Memorial Day strangulation

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Pulkrabek, in the mug shot at left, helped launch Bachmann's political career.
Bill Pulkrabek, a Washington County Commissioner who played a key role in launching Rep. Michele Bachmann's political career, has been jailed on suspicion of domestic assault -- including strangulation.

The 41-year-old real estate broker was arrested Monday afternoon in Woodbury. After booking he posted $25,000 bail.

Initial reports did not specify the victim. Pulkrabek lives in Woodbury with his wife Lori and serves as Washington County commissioner.

The county attorney will consider whether to file felony charges against Pulkrabrek today.

We quoted Pulkrabek extensively in a 2006 cover story detailing Bachmann's rise. She was one of five family-values Republicans he persuaded to run for seats on the Stillwater School Board in 1999 -- a race that traditionally was free of party politics. The five candidates finished last, but the race gave Bachmann a taste for political power.

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Robin Eley
Pulkrabek was quoted extensively in a 2006 CP cover story.
The school board run is widely credited with raising her political profile for the first time, giving her campaign experience, and endearing her to party kingmakers. Pulkrabek, who was also the GOP's chair for the Stillwater district at the time, notes that the '99 school board race inspired three times the usual turnout. He also says that was the year he met Bachmann, who told him she wanted to run for [GOP State Sen. Gary] Laidig's seat. He, instead, encouraged her to run for school board first: "We talked about knocking off Gary later."

And she did. And Laidig told us something that has proved prophetic now that Bachmann is considering a presidential run:

Nobody really knows who she is, and she just comes across as this petite, attractive soccer mom. And that's it. But the fact is, she's part of a group that is absolutely determined to take over the Republican Party. It's that wing of the party that's very much in step with people like Norm Coleman and the Taxpayers League. And the fact is that they know how to run races. Good races, too. From getting delegates to hitting phone banks, they cover it, and Michele's part of that.

Read more: The Chosen One: The Secret of Michele Bachmann's Success
More insanity: www.shitbachmannsays.com



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