Michelle Bachmann, the former Republican congresswoman from Minnesota with strong ties to the Evangelical Christian and Tea Party wings of the GOP, said last week that she was considering running for resigned Sen. Al Franken’s (D-MN) Senate seat.
Bachmann resigned from Congress amid an ethics investigation and tough re-election chances. So what’s she been up to since then?
Well, a lot, as it turns out. After leaving her government job in January 2015, Bachmann has stayed active on the conservative speaking circuit, taking on a decidedly more apocalyptic tone until President Donald Trump’s election in November 2016.
Here are a few highlights.
Obama Purposefully Destroyed America With The Iran Deal
In a Facebook post in March 2015, Bachmann compared President Barack Obama’s deal with Iran to Andreas Lubitz, a pilot who had recently deliberately flown a passenger flight into the French Alps.
“With his Iran deal, Barack Obama is for the 300 million souls of the United States what Andreas Lubitz was for the 150 souls on the German Wings flight – a deranged pilot flying his entire nation into the rocks,” she wrote. “After the fact, among the smoldering remains of American cities, the shocked survivors will ask, why did he do it?”
The Apocalypse Is Coming, So Convert As Many Jews As You Can
In a November 2015 interview with Tony Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council, Bachmann reflected on a recent trip they had taken together to Israel.
“Events are speeding up so quickly right now, and we see how relevant the Bible is, and we’re reading our newspaper at the same time we’re learning about these biblical events, and it’s literally day by day by day, we’re seeing the fulfillment of scripture right in front of our eyes, even while we’re on the ground.”
“We recognize the shortness of the hour,” she added, “and that’s why we as a remnant want to be faithful in these days and do what it is that the Holy Spirit is speaking to each one of us, to be faithful in the Kingdom and to help bring in as many as we can — even among the Jews — share Jesus Christ with everyone that we possibly can because, again, He’s coming soon.”
Trump Surrogate To Evangelical Christians
Bachmann initially supported Ted Cruz’s bid to become the Republicans’ presidential nominee. But she eventually threw her support behind Trump, serving on an Evangelical advisory board the campaign put together and, according to her, advising Trump on foreign policy.
Trump, Bachmann said, understood that Americans feared “unmitigated immigration” and “radical Islam.”
And she rallied Evangelical Christians to the cause: “Believers in Jesus Christ, the believing community across the United States, statistically, will be the voting block that chooses who the next president of the United States is,” Bachmann said at the Values Voter Summit in September 2016.
“It will either be Donald Trump or it will be Hillary Clinton, one of the two,” she said. “And just like the book of Deuteronomy teaches us, ‘I have set before you life and death.’ Which will you choose?’”
Trump’s Bragging Of Assaulting Women Was ‘Bad Boy Talk’
Perhaps Bachmann’s most public moment as a Trump surrogate came in October 2016. She defended him in the wake of the “Access Hollywood” revelations, in which Trump was seen to have bragged during a television taping that he could kiss and grope women without their consent.
“This is bad boy talk, and of course that’s what [Hillary Clinton] wants everybody to talk about,” Bachmann told MSNBC’s Chris Matthews, joining a chorus of committed Trump defenders dismissing the tape as “opposition research,” despite the Washington Post having published it.
She repeated the phrase elsewhere. “The Clinton campaign had to change the conversation because she had a lot of really bad news this week,” Bachmann said on CNN. “And so this 11-year-old bad boy locker room talk, this is how she wanted to do it.”
‘I Believe This Is The Last Election’
Advocating for Trump seemed to focus Bachmann’s apocalyptic flair. In September 2016, Meet the Press highlighted some alarming remarks she’d made during an interview with Christian Broadcasting Network.
“I don’t want to be melodramatic, but I do want to be truthful,” Bachmann said. “I believe without a shadow of a doubt, this is the last election. This is it.”
“This is the last election when we even have a chance to vote for somebody who will stand up for godly, moral principles,” she added separately.
Hillary Clinton, Bachmann said, would “change the demographics of the United States so no Republican will ever win again.”
Pressing For Deportations, ‘Allegiance’ From Immigrant Communities
Bachmann spent 2017 pressing the Trump administration to support the right wing policies she’d come to expect after his nationalist candidacy, often by targeting Muslims and immigrants directly.
She said, according to the Pioneer Press, that Trump should deport individuals “who are unwilling to bear allegiance to the United States.”
“Too many people who are being afraid of being called racists, bigots, Islamophobes,” she added. “I’m not afraid of it, because what we’ve got to do is talk about the truth of the problems that are going on in Minnesota.”
“This is a failed multicultural experiment that is killing people and destroying the future of the West,” she told the far-right website World Net Daily the same month, referring to Minnesota’s large Somali population.
She asked, referring to a Somali-American police officer, Mohamed Noor, who had fatally shot 40-year-old Justine Damond, whether Noor was “acting like the Muslim religious police, maintaining strict adherence to keeping women’s bodies covered when he shot Justine? Was he acting from a cultural instinct?”
She added to WND: “[I]t’s prudent to ask whether police officer Noor shot Justine due to a Somali/Shariah mindset.”
“Deport the 40 percent of illegal aliens who are here on visa overstays,” she argued separately in an October interview with Breitbart, adding that she would “pause” America’s refugee resettlement program, too.