Former Minnesota congresswoman and failed 2012 presidential candidate Michele Bachmann is mulling whether she should run for Sen. Al Franken’s (D-MN) seat in a 2018 special election.
In an interview last week on television pastor Jim Bakker’s show, Bachmann said people have been contacting her about running for Franken’s seat, which will be available following the senator’s planned resignation Tuesday. In a defiant, emotional speech from the Senate floor last month, Franken announced he would be leaving Congress following weeks of mounting allegations of sexual misconduct against him.
Multiple women publicly accused Franken of sexual misconduct and groping. Franken apologized to one woman and combatted the stories of others. After a sixth woman came forward accusing Franken of misconduct, a flood of female Democratic senators called on him to step aside, which he did a day later.
Bachmann said she is weighing a Senate bid, but she is concerned about what it will “cost” her and her family.
“The question is should it be me? Should it be now? … There’s a price you pay and the price is bigger than ever because the swamp is so toxic,” she said, according to a recording of the interview published by Ring Wing Watch Tuesday. “I didn’t shed a tear when I left the contest because I fulfilled the calling God gave me, so the question is, am I being called to do this now? I don’t know.”
Bachmann dropped out of the presidential race in January 2012 after a sixth-place showing in the Iowa caucuses that month. In the interview with Bakker last week, she said that despite dropping out of the race, she was “wildly successful” in bringing the need to repeal and replace Obamacare to the forefront of Republican platform, an effort she claimed God called on her to do.
She said she’s apprehensive about returning to the political climate today, which is “like nothing we’ve ever seen before.”
“I mean it is really tough, if you’re going against the tide in D.C., if you’re trying to stand for biblical principles in D.C. and you stick your head up out of the hole, you do— the blades come whirling and they’re gonna chop you off,” she said, just before Bakker claimed that the press is trying to “kill” Trump. “It’s not an easy place to be.”
As a Tea Party loyalist, Bachmann would likely face strong opposition in the state with a Democratic governor who has appointed his own Democratic Lt. Gov. Tina Smith to serve in Franken’s seat until a special election can be held in November 2018. Smith is reportedly planning to run for seat in November after Gov. Mark Dayton was pressured to choose a Democratic replacement who would be willing to campaign for the seat.
Watch a clip of the interview below: