Politics

Rep. Bachmann holds breakfast chat in San Rafael

Thursday, September 15, 2011

One of the more conservative candidates for president came to liberal Marin County on Thursday to raise money.

Michele Bachmann held a breakfast fundraiser at a home in San Rafael. Bachmann was a front-runner at one time in the Republican race for the White House.

Around 160 enthusiastic supporters cheered Michele Bachmann at the home of Tea Party organizer Sally Zelikovsky, who introduced the Republican candidate to a crowd who knew her stump speech by heart.

"Barack Obama will be a one-term president," Bachmann told the group.

She hit the familiar themes of lower taxes and less regulation during her appearance on Thursday.

"As President of the United States, I won't rest until we repeal Obamacare," Bachmann said. She criticized President Obama's jobs bill as more stimulus spending, which she called a failure.

"It gave us Solyndra," Bachmann said. "Wasn't that great? We got Solyndra."

Bachmann told the audience the key to turning the country around was lower taxes and less regulation.

"Underneath this brown jacket is a titanium spine," Bachmann said. "I want to pass the mother of all repeal bills."

The owner of a manufacturing company asked Bachmann what industries she would support with government spending.

"Pick one -- aerospace, communications, Internet -- any one of those industries was heavily subsidized by the government," the supporter said.

Bachmann said there was a place for government investment. She mentioned the space industry, but didn't elaborate.

"All of the tax variables are wrong," Bachmann said. "The taxing variables are wrong. The regulatory variables are wrong."

After the breakfast event, ABC7 asked Bachmann the same question.

"I think a good example is the space industry, and there's a lot more we can look at," Bachmann said.

When we asked Bachmann to elaborate, she said "I'll just leave it at space."

"That's a longer issue, and I don't want to give a flip off-the-cuff answer because it's a lot more involved," Bachmann said.

Outside the home, reporters asked about Gov. Rick Perry's description of Social Security as a Ponzi scheme.

"My opinion is the federal government needs to keep the promise that it made to people who are currently on the Social Security system," Bachmann said.

Bachmann also charged at Perry's claim that building a fence around the border isn't a realistic idea.

"I don't agree with that that," Bachmann asserted. "I think we need to secure our southern border, and we need to build a fence."

Bachmann also disagreed with Perry's call for HPV vaccinations for Texas school girls, which she said was "an abuse of power, which the governor admitted he did make a mistake."

It's becoming a familiar pattern: Bachmann's front-runner status started slipping the day Perry decided to run for president, and ABC7's political analyst believes social conservatives are choosing Perry because of his gender.

"When they could have somebody who was a strong male figure, like Gov. Perry, I think it was pretty clear they were going to abandon Michelle Bachmann," said Prof. Bruce Cain, Ph.D.

Zelikovsky, a Tea Party organizer, disagrees.

"When you consider a large proportion of Tea Party leaders are women, I think that's antiquated," Zelikovsky said. "I don't think anybody thinks that way anymore."

Just four years ago, Hillary Clinton's supporters on the other side of the political spectrum were complaining of sexism derailing her campaign. Cain said Bachmann could win in Iowa, but the only way she climbs back into serious contention is if Perry falls.

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michele bachmann, san rafael, politics, mark matthews
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