Minnesota representative and Tea Party Caucus leader Michele Bachmann told the Des Moines Register in a telephone interview published Monday that she would be a one-term president, but then qualified her statement with an “if.” Bachmann said if she could “turn things around,” she would be in and out of the White House in four years.
That is presupposing, of course, she can even get the Republican nomination to challenge the incumbent to get into the White House for four years.
A recent NBC/Wall Street Journal poll puts Bachmann in seventh place in a Republican primary that would include front-running former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, businessman Donald Trump, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty. She does finish — with 5 percent support from respondents — above former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum and current Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, but she trails Romney by 16 points.
Although the numbers are not insurmountable, considering the fluctuation poll numbers undergo over time, it appears Bachmann fairs worse if a shorter list of candidates are provided. The same poll took Palin, Trump and Huckabee out of the prospective list (many analysts believe they will not seek the GOP nomination) and Bachmann still finished well above Barbour, but she fell even further behind Romney, who garnered 40 percent of the poll vote (as opposed to Bachmann’s 11 percent).
“I’m a principled reformer, and my goal is to see the country turn around,” Bachmann told the Register. “I’m also committed to being a one-term president if that’s what it takes in order to turn things around because this is not about a personal ambition.”
She continued, “It’s about getting our financial house in order and to become respected again in the world on an international scale.”
Bachmann has had no problem airing her opposition to government spending and health care reform legislation. She was very vocal during the recent battle over the fiscal budget, noting she would vote against it due to the aforementioned health care appropriations that were left in the final agreed-upon document. How she would alter American foreign policy so the U. S. would become “respected again” is not certain.
As for when she will commit to declaring a run for the presidency, Bachmann continues to say she’ll wait until June before making a decision. She also noted that she will not let the decisions of her Republican opponents alter her timeline.
“It’s not a rash decision,” she said. “It’s a deliberate, thoughtful decision determining what assets will be required, what people we’ll need to put in place, delegation of authority, how to actually get to ‘yes,’ so to speak, how to be successful in the endeavor.”
Since it will not affect her decision, Bachmann was undoubtedly unfazed that Romney moved closer to declaring for his run Monday. Romney announced he was setting up a presidential exploratory committee, generally the first step toward running for the Oval Office.
Pawlenty launched an exploratory committee last week.
Sources close to Gingrich have reported that the former Speaker of the House might forego an exploratory committee and just announce his candidacy sometime in May.