Sometimes insomnia is a bane for political columnists. At other times, though, it’s a blessing. Of course, not being Rush Limbaugh or Glenn Beck, I did have to carefully check to see if breaking wee hours news that Tea Party doyenne Rep. Michele “Fact-Free Diet” Bachmann (R-Minn.)’s local video announcement that she would not be seeking a fifth term in Congress did not have a byline from The Onion, Daily Currant, or a late night comedy writer.
Bachmann has been on the royal gaffe throne alongside Rep. Louie “Terror Babies” Gohmert (R-Tex.) for a long while now. Former skin goop multi-level marketer, BYU punter, and freshman Rep. Jason “NuMagic Undies” Chaffetz (R-Utah) had just signed on as court jester. I can think of no politician whose cornering of the Washington Post Fact Checker, Glenn Kessler’s Pinocchio, and Politifact’s “Pants on Fire” whopper market even comes close to our bug-eyed Congresswoman from La-La Land. Mrs. Bachmann is the Jedi Master of the joke butt set between migraines.
Lawyers I have known over the years get rather persnickety regarding fact, but Michele Bachmann, whose penchant for blabbing baseless accusations would consign any other average attorney to a career stacking boxes in a Walmart warehouse. Bachmann turned blunder into a brand. Few politicians could readily raise millions in campaign and PAC donations virtually overnight. Michele regularly dropped the money bomb. Grudging admiration.
Scant weeks ago, Bachmann ran campaign ads more than a year and a half from the 2014 elections. She had a tidy war chest. Why then the wee-hours withdrawal video? We might expect that in deposed Latin American dictators just before they scurried off with a few billion pesetas from the Banana Republic’s treasury and away from the pock-marked firing squad wall. Nope, our Tea Party twisted sister would give us nearly two years’ advance notice of her departure, unlike fellow twisted sister, former Alaska half-Governor and flopped Veepster candidate Sarah Palin (R-Alaska), who scurried off one mid-term day to make millions promoting herself on cable TV.
There are a number of reasons for Bachmann to abandon ship just after a substantial campaign ad buy in her district early in her fourth term. First, in what was a safe Republican district, voters humbled her with scarcely a few thousand vote victory margin last November. Bachmann’s gaffe-filled presidential primary campaign and espoused Iowa roots didn’t play well in a district outside of Minneapolis. Secondly, her ill-fated presidential campaign was under investigation for ethics violations, with FBI gumshoes joining the inquisition, and thirdly, her constituents likely resented her relentless national chasing of media limelight as Tea Party Queen. A steamy erotic romance novel featuring a Bachmann lookalike set in frigid Siberia just published today. In short, Bachmann saw the writing on the wall, or tea leaves, and her plus-sized ego couldn’t risk a humiliating defeat next fall.
Despite the laughs from late night TV funnyman Jimmy Fallon’s house band’s controversial entreé,” for Bachmann’s ill-fated arrival on set, methinks Wagner’s Götterdammerung came to mind for her middle-of-the-night sayonara.
In this columnist’s enjoyable years of Bachmann-baiting, her overdone rambling this morning gives me hope that a favorite watering hole of lampoon material is far from running dry. Without a 2014 election to worry about, what little self control Bachmann managed for herself has, as with Elvis, “left the building.”