Michele Bachmann still hasn't paid Iowa staffers; one says her behavior is un-Christian

waldron bachmann.jpeg
Waldron (left) says Bachmann is withholding pay from former staffers unless they sign a nondisclosure agreement.
According to Peter Waldron, Michele Bachmann's colorful National Field Coordinator during her ill-fated presidential campaign, his former boss still hasn't paid her Iowa staffers -- and it's not because she's broke.

SEE ALSO: Michele Bachmann, Profiles in Courage: She runs away from, lies to CNN reporter [VIDEO]

Instead, it's because she refuses to pay up until they sign a nondisclosure agreement "that prohibits any discussion of any criminal, moral, and/or unethical behavior witnessed during Mrs. Bachmann's campaign in Iowa," in the words of Waldron.

During an interview with Salon, Waldron said the importance Bachmann places on the nondisclosure agreement stems from her campaign's alleged misuse of an email list -- a story we told you about last summer.

More from Salon:
A home-schooling group accused the Bachmann campaign of stealing the list, which was contained on a volunteer's laptop, and then using it to fundraise for the campaign. The home-schooling group has sued the campaign and Waldron said there is also a criminal investigation pending, explaining that he spoke with police about the incident "several times."

"They wanted us to have no further conversation [with police] without first notifying Michelle's attorneys, and we just refused," he told Salon. "We've been lied to at every turn."

"This story is important. I've got five soldiers, as it were, five men who are willing to stand and not capitulate to this unnatural pressure that is coming from the Bachmann campaign. It's just immoral what they're trying to do. They're trying to shut us up. You want to get paid? You gotta sign this agreement and not talk to either the police or lawyers," he continued.
Yesterday, Waldron fleshed out his allegations in a statement published on ChristianNewsWire. Here's an excerpt:
Representative Michele Bachmann (R-MN), former presidential candidate and a leader of the Tea Party Caucus in the House of Representatives in Washington, has yet to pay some of her Iowa presidential campaign staff after one year and in spite of the fact that over $2,000,000 sits in bank accounts at her disposal...

Dr. Waldron continued by saying, "I feel a moral obligation to see that my Christian brothers and sisters are paid for worked performed in good faith. I've continually communicated by telephone and email with [Bachmann Finance Chairman] Mr. [James] Pollack for 1 year but he broke every promise made to me to pay the staff. I appealed to Dr. [Marcus] Bachmann for help. I appealed to Representative Bachmann's Chief of Staff Robert Boland to intercede with Mrs. Bachmann on behalf of her loyal Iowa staff -- all of whom are married, all have children."...

"It is sobering to think that a Christian member of Congress would betray her testimony to the Lord and the public by withholding earned wages from deserving staff," Dr. Waldron concluded.
But in an email to Salon, Pollack denies Waldron's accusations. Here's the entire email:
Mr Waldren's presentation of the facts and related allegations are false and inaccurate. Why Mr Waldren would be motivated to attempt to disparage the Congresswoman, the campaign, or fellow campaign members I can't explain.
All Bachmann campaign debt is accurately reflected in the FEC filings of Bachmann for President. As of today, there is but one Iowa consulting firm having only their last invoice outstanding for $3000. We have been in communication and anticipate bringing resolution to this invoice shortly. There are two Iowa consultants who recently submitted invoices to us, over eleven months after the campaign concluded, each of which are significantly under a $1000 dollars. We are in the process of resolving these as well. It should be noted the Presidential Campaign suspended all activity on January 4th, 2012, so any claims for compensation thru the month of January 2012 are erroneous. Mrs. Bachmann has paid off in excess of 90% of her Presidential Campaign debt, and we look forward to accurately resolving any residual outstanding campaign debt in the very near future
This isn't the first time Bachmann has generated negative headlines thanks to debt incurred by her presidential campaign. Regardless of whether Waldron's accusation about the nondisclosure agreement is true, it's certainly a bad look for someone who staunchly opposes raising the federal government's debt ceiling.

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swmnguy topcommenter

I don't know what their working arrangements were, but if they filled out W2 forms and I9s, Rep. Bachmann can absolutely not refuse to pay them for not signing a non-disclosure.  If they did the work, she can't refuse for that reason under any circumstance I know of.  They should just sue her and leave it at that.

Of course, they chose to work for one of the more obvious charlatans of our time, so it's hard to feel too sorry for them.

Branden Strot
Branden Strot

has big spending jim graves paid his people?

MNjoe topcommenter

Well, if you're stupid enough to work for Michelle Bachmann's (ill-fated from the start) presidential campaign, you get what you deserve and hopefully learned a valuable lesson about the "Christian right." They're not really Christian and they're usually wrong.  BTW, how would signing a non-disclosure form prevent one from talking to the police or testifying in a legal case? I think the needs of the court would supercede this.

Erika J. Dani
Erika J. Dani

serves them right for working for her! what did they expect?


So unlike most campaign debt, it's not that the money is gone and donors prefer to donate to current camapigns, it's that she refuses to pay her staff unless they agree to cover up.

Cover up what?

And maybe after reading, "'It is sobering to think that a Christian member of Congress would betray her testimony to the Lord and the public by withholding earned wages from deserving staff,' Dr. Waldron concluded." the good Christians in CD6 will figure out that Bachmann's religiosity doesn't make her a good person.

Anne Castro
Anne Castro

Doesn't that violate the Whistle Blower law?

Theresa Bruckner
Theresa Bruckner

I am also not an attorney, but that sounds shenaniganous to me.

Theresa Bruckner
Theresa Bruckner

Uh, that sounds totally unenforceable. Won't discuss criminal or unethical conduct? Good luck suing someone for breach of that. "They can't report our crimes and ethics violations to you, authorities! They signed an NDA!" "Whoops, so they did! Guess you're off the hook, Ms. Bachmann!"

Curtis Meyer
Curtis Meyer

Wait. A crazy, unscrupulous, ditz is treating people like a crazy, unscrupulous ditz. I'm shocked!

Daniel J. Scott
Daniel J. Scott

If the staffers had an agreement with the campaign that they would be paid for their services, that payment cannot legally be used for consideration in another contract, which would make the NDA not legally binding. In other words, they already earned that money; she can't make them sign another contract in order to get it. (I am not an attorney, and this is not legal advice.)


I'm pretty sure NDA's that prohibit talking to the police about possible criminal behavior are non-enforceable, and could amount to obstruction of justice.

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