Clash of the left, right titans: Bachmann to debate Grayson on health care

Rep. Michele Bachmann, the darling of the Tea Party right, will square off in a debate tonight with Florida liberal stalwart Rep. Alan Grayson over health care.

The two will be guests on Larry King Live, which airs tonight at 9 p.m. Eastern (8 Central) on CNN. Both Bachmann and Grayson’s offices confirmed their appearances to me this morning. It’s an interesting pairing, given that though the two agree on very little from a policy standpoint, they’ve often been linked in the media for their similar rising-star status in their respective parties.

Time Magazine, in late November, called them the “two great breakout stars of partisanship” in 2009.

Once upon a time, their junior status in the House of Representatives, with its 435 power-hungry politicos, might have confined them to their cramped offices and after-hours speaking time on C-SPAN. Instead they have turned outrageous utterances into viral sensations on YouTube. Tapping into the partisan fervor surrounding health-care reform, Grayson and Bachmann have built national profiles and become the darlings of their respective ideological camps.

It’s probably a safe bet, then, that they won’t find consensus on the way forward on health care reform.

As for what to expect tonight, both Bachmann and Grayson spokesmen said they expect a memoral performance. Perhaps Grayson himself said it best today on Twitter: “Are you ready for some great TV?”

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Comments (2)

  1. Submitted by Theo Kozel on 03/04/2010 - 09:10 am.

    Grayson and Bachmann do not deserve any more exposure. It’s appalling that they are called “breakout stars”. If anything, they specialize in vapid mud-slinging and fear mongering.

  2. Submitted by Bernice Vetsch on 03/04/2010 - 04:43 pm.

    Far from being “outrageous,” Representative Grayson developed eight pieces of legislation within a few days of the Supreme Court’s decision to allow corporate “persons” to spend billions to defeat candidates for office who won’t reliably vote for corporate interests over human rights and needs.

    He should be treasured for his stand-up actions on behalf of real democracy.

    Who tried to hang that label on him without visiting his web site, I wonder.

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