Bachmann: Dems attack me because they're worried I'll become president

The Minnesota congresswoman offers her theory for why she's unpopular on the left

Published September 4, 2009 6:30PM (EDT)

Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., knows the real reason everyone's been criticizing her: It's because she's a woman.

Media Matters caught an interview Bachmann gave with talk radio host Mike Gallagher on Thursday in which the subject of Democratic attacks against the congresswoman came up. The consensus, generally, was that it's because she's doing something right. And then the two delved further.

"There's a handful of politicians, notably women, and you'd think some of your fellow female colleagues would be proud of people like Michele Bachmann and Sarah Palin and others who have achieved a level of national prominence, and yet they want to eviscerate you," Gallagher said.

"Well, I think part of it is, remember, they didn't want Miguel Estrada as a Supreme Court justice because it would be a Republican making that nomination. They wanted to be first," Bachmann said. "And I think, also, with women politicians, they want to make sure no women, no woman becomes president before a Democrat woman, and so they're doing everything they can to, I think, sabotage women like Sarah Palin, perhaps women like myself, or similarly situated women, to make sure that we don't have a prominent national voice."

In her defense, Bachmann has a glimmer of a point when it comes to Estrada, though she's getting her timeline a bit mixed up -- then-President Bush had nominated him to be a federal court of appeals judge. Liberals opposed him because of his conservative stances, but it became all the more important in Democrats' minds to take a stand on him then, because if he'd been confirmed to the court of appeals it would have been just about impossible to keep him off the Supreme Court. It's the same principle that was in effect with the nomination of Sonia Sotomayor -- Republicans simply couldn't defeat the nomination of a qualified judge who would also be the first Hispanic justice on the Supreme Court.

As for the rest of Bachmann's argument, well, she can think what she likes.

By Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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Democratic Party Feminism Michele Bachmann R-minn.