Michele Bachmann Aims to Start House Tea Party Caucus

Monday, 19 Jul 2010 01:42 PM

By John Rossomando

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U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann aims to give the tea party a voice on Capitol Hill with a formal caucus in the House, although indications are that some members may not be ready to listen.

The Minnesota Republican, who would chair the caucus, said on Fox & Friends Friday that the group’s goal would be “to bring the ideals of people all across America that they have been trying to have Congress listen to them and bring those voices into Congress, so that we can hear what the tea party movement is all about. The one thing that people tell us is that the Congress is not listening to the American people.

“And that’s what this thing is about — listening to the American people.”
Bachmann filed papers Thursday seeking the approval of the House Committee on Administration to establish the caucus, with herself as chairwoman. But it remains to be seen who else might join the group, according to the Chicago Tribune’s “The Swamp” political blog.

Bachmann told Fox & Friends she is confident about approval for the caucus, but she concedes that some in Congress who dislike the tea party movement might try to stop her.

And the St. Cloud Times, which covers part of the two-term Republican’s district, reported that a committee official told her staff the caucus could encounter approval problems because of “the perceived political nature of the label ‘tea party’.”

So Bachmann wrote to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi Friday seeking her support for the caucus, the Times reported. Ironically, the California Democrat is one of the tea party’s main targets.

During Bachmann’s Fox and Friends appearance, she said, “We want to be able to start this caucus, so that people can say, ‘Gee, we can have an avenue to filter my ideas in, so they can make it into the greatest democratic body there is — the House of Representatives.’”

She also told the St. Cloud Times she hopes the caucus can be bipartisan.
Rand Paul, the tea party-backed Kentucky senatorial candidate, has told National Review Online that he plans to start a similar caucus in the Senate if he is elected.


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