Bachmann: 'Horrific' Penn State Scandal Should Foster National Discussion on Sexual Abuse

Sunday, 13 Nov 2011 11:16 AM

By Amy Woods

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The "horrific" sexual abuse scandal that has Penn State University should lead to a national discussion about the issue but should be addressed at the state level rather than federal, Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann says.

Michele Bachmann, Penn State"I think my automatic reaction would be, even though I'm a small woman, I'd want to go find that guy and beat him to a pulp," the Minnesota congresswoman said today on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” "I think that's what any parent would want to do.''

The investigation of rape allegations against former Penn State football defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky is a state matter that should stay at the state level, Bachmann said.

"It doesn't necessarily mean that this issue should be kicked up to Congress," she said. "I really do believe this needs to stay exactly in the jurisdiction where the offense occurred. Congress has a lot of other things to pay attention to."

The scandal has led to the ouster of longtime iconic football coach Joe Paterno, although he has not been charged, the university’s president, and at least two other administrators.

“This Week” Host David Gregory asked Bachmann about her differences on the issues with front-runner Mitt Romney. Bachman said she would repeal Obamacare if elected, which she said the former Massachusetts governor would not do.

"If you go issue after issue, Gov. Romney has been on both sides of the issues," she said. "I've been on one side of the issues. I make no apologies. Of all the candidates in the race, you won't find any surprises."

On the issue of terrorism, she said President Barack Obama and the administration have made a series of "strategic blunders" that have had "profound consequences." She said on the program, as she did in the GOP debate Saturday night, that she wants to reinstate waterboarding as an interrogation tactic.

"We have no jail for terrorists," she said. "Either we kill them, or we release them. We don't have a place to put al-Qaida when we pick them up. What we need to win this war on terror is interrogation."

Further, she said Iraq should compensate the United States for the $800 billion that has been spent on the war and the more than 4,400 American lives that have been lost.

"Several million per life, I think, at minimum," she said.

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