Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) is in a surprisingly tight race for reelection despite her new, more conservative district. Businessman Jim Graves is just a few points behind her according to recent polls. Her negatives are high, her job approval numbers are low. There is no independent candidate on the ballot to peel off anti-Bachmann votes from the Graves.
Why is this happening? Because voters in her district are figuring out she's nuts. This little gem was hidden in an article today at the Star Tribune:
"Jay Mews, a St. Cloud resident who says he usually gravitates toward independent candidates, went to listen to Graves.
"Michele Bachmann is the gift that keeps on giving to the press," he said. "All these crazy conspiracy theories are distracting from the real issues. I'm looking for the real deal." said Mews, who is unemployed and who says he's looking for the candidate with the strongest message on jobs and the economy."
Despite the Minnesota media's concerted effort to not cover Bachmann's craziness, the national media did when she ran for President. While Minnesota's media will always ignore her gaffes, conspiracy theories, lies, fear-mongering, bigotry and etc., the national media did their job.
And Minnesotans are finally seeing Bachmann for what she is.
Former Governor, and recent convert to blogging, Arne Carlson sums it up quite well in a post entitled Michele Bachmann.... A Lady in Decline:
"Michele Bachmann's recent assaults against the Muslims and again suggesting that President Obama is sympathetic to Islamic extremism reminds me of the desperation of Senator Joseph McCarthy in his declining months.
Like McCarthy, Bachmann was once at the center of the new Republican Right with her attacks on the President's loyalty and questioning his commitment to standing up against the "enemy." Both McCarthy and Bachmann were able to define their Presidential targets as "sympathizers" and "appeasers".
And, like McCarthy, she has found herself in decline and outside her party's power structure.
The early Iowa primary campaign was her high water mark. While lashing out against the patriotism of Obama, she was proclaiming the virtues of her Iowa upbringing and pledging her undying loyalty to our neighbors south of us.
But more recently, she was relegated to a minor role outside the Republican National Convention in Tampa and her pronouncements are now carried closer to the obituary section of the newspaper than page one.
What has happened to Bachmann is common with the McCarthy types - they rise quickly as they step loudly and carelessly on the reputations of innocent people and they fall just as rapidly in accordance with the public's insistence on truth and decency. Rising Republican criticism has clearly hastened her downturn."