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Tom Emmer: ‘I’m not trying to be Michele Bachmann’

WASHINGTON — In an interview with Capitol Hill’s Roll Call, 6th District GOP candidate Tom Emmer didn’t discourage comparisions to retiring Rep. Michele Bachmann but said he’s looking to win on his own merits next year.

Emmer’s short Q&A is light on new details, except that he’s apparently decided on an early response to questions about how he stacks up against the Tea Party favorite he’s looking to replace.

From Roll Call

Emmer: “I am who I am. I could never fill Michele Bachmann’s shoes. She’s represented the people of the 6th District as well as anyone who has represented the people of the 6th District. If I’m fortunate enough to get through the endorsement process, and then if I’m fortunate enough to get elected to Congress and represent the people of the 6th District, they have expectations. I will try and honor those expectations. They want the people that they elect, that they hire to serve them, to understand what that means — to serve them not their own interests. I don’t know if that makes me like Mark Kennedy or it makes me like Michele Bachmann.”

He used that same comparision — “I’m not trying to be Mark Kennedy, I’m not trying to be Michele Bachmann” — later on in the interview. Kennedy represented the 6th for two terms before losing a U.S. Senate race to Amy Klobuchar in 2006.

Emmer also praised the GOP endorsement process — he’s pledged to abide by the endorsement — and told Roll Call he wouldn’t be opposed to riding Washington’s Metro to work if he’s elected to Congress. 

The whole interview is here

Devin Henry can be reached at

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Comments (7)

  1. Submitted by Rich Crose on 06/18/2013 - 12:27 pm.

    On my Mother’s Grave

    I swear I bought a used car from this guy.

  2. Submitted by James Hamilton on 06/18/2013 - 01:54 pm.

    Damning with faint praise?

    “She’s represented the people of the 6th District as well as anyone who has represented the people of the 6th District.”

  3. Submitted by Steve Hoffman on 06/18/2013 - 02:21 pm.

    Not trying?

    Michele Bachmann’s record isn’t exactly something one would need to strive very hard to match.

    58 bills sponsored, of which 53 went to committee (i.e. nowhere); of the remainder, three were agreed to by simple resolution (H.Res. 373 (111th): Expressing support for designation of the month of September as “National Hydrocephalus Awareness Month” ; H.Res. 923 (110th): Recognizing the State of Minnesota’s 150th anniversary ; and H.Res. 789 (110th): Honoring public child welfare agencies, nonprofit organizations and private entities providing services for foster children.), ONE passed the house (yet another futile attempt to repeal the Affordable Care Act), and NONE were ever passed by the house.

    If Mr Emmer feels he can never live up to this gold standard of do-nothingness, he may have some severe confidence issues.

    • Submitted by Dennis Tester on 06/18/2013 - 06:03 pm.

      Republicans don’t judge their representatives

      by how many new laws they pass. They judge their representatives by how well they preserve, protect and defend the Constitution. Remember, every new law gives the government more power and you less freedom. Although I think that’s what democrats want.

      • Submitted by Todd Hintz on 06/18/2013 - 10:19 pm.


        “Freedom” is just one of those words bantered around by Republicans so much that it’s lost any real meaning. They complain about light bulbs while spy programs get passed and expanded and sacrifice our troops needlessly in made-up wars. There’s the REAL assault on freedom.

        • Submitted by Dennis Tester on 06/19/2013 - 07:29 am.

          I’ll make it simple for you

          In a free society the government doesn’t control every aspect of our lives. When people criticize their representatives for not passing enough laws, those people aren’t interested in living in a free society.

  4. Submitted by Ray Schoch on 06/19/2013 - 07:58 am.

    What a treat it is

    … to see Mr. Tester’s interesting form of analysis return to the comment boxes!

    Just for the record, I haven’t seen any credible evidence that Democrats — or even independents — judge their congressional representatives by how many laws they pass. Some people might be inclined to judge their representatives by how truthful or accurate their public statements are, but apparently Mr. Emmer, and a slim majority of voters in the 6th District, aren’t among those people, since Mrs. Bachmann’s public statements are fairly widely renowned for falsehood or outright looniness, and sometimes both. Since Mrs. Bachmann was an embarrassment to the state and the congressional district she “represented,” it’s possible to view Mr. Emmer’s statement that he’s “…not trying to be Michele Bachmann” as a positive sign for both the district and the state.

    Unless he’s moved a sizable distance toward the center, I would not personally rejoice to see Mr. Emmer elected, but we’ll just have to see who survives the various preliminary processes, including the election, and ends up being the district’s congressional representative. There may well emerge a candidate who IS trying to be more Bachmannesque than the original. Stranger things have happened.

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