Bachmann won’t let Perry’s political warts go unexamined


“The Beverly Hillbillies” once sang about “Texas Tea,” but Michele Bachmann did her best to make Rick Perry Texas Toast in last night’s Tea Party debate. Her cudgel was not, as previously announced, Social Security, but Perry’s executive order requiring girls to get vaccinations against human papillomavirus. Bachmann contended this was a drug company payoff, and a post-debate email stated, “I’m offended … To have innocent little 12-year old girls be forced to have a government injection through an executive order is just flat out wrong.”

Between that and ripping Perry for allowing illegal immigrants to get college aid, Ms. 4 Percent (CNN poll) was judged to have won the debate (ABC’s Amy Walter); Reuters, with possibly coincidental religious allusions, said she “comes back to life”; Talking Points’ Josh Marshall said Bachmann “ran circles” around Perry. WashPo fact-checker Glenn Kessler says Bachmann is incorrect (again) about her claim Obama cut Medicare, and still is confused that a “blank check” can’t have a number filled in. Will it matter? We await the verdict of an audience who thinks ill uninsured 30-year-olds should die.

Here’s a verb you don’t want to read for a forest fire: “exploded.” The Duluth News Tribune’s John Myers says the Pagami Creek Fire has “exploded in size”; it’s spreading outside the BWCA and now covers more than 31 square miles. (This time yesterday, it was 7.) It’s the largest wildfire since the May 2007 Ham Lake Fire, which burned 120 square miles. More than 60 firefighters are battling it with 100 more on the way. The Strib’s Bill McAuliffe contends 150 firefighters are in on it, and adds there is only a slight chance of rain today. BWCA entrances are closed and there’s a “precautionary evacuation area.”

The Strib’s Jim Spencer passes along White House calculations that the newly proposed American Jobs Act “would support” 18,400 Minnesota jobs. The state has 71,000 long-term unemployed and 213,370 total, so we’re talking enough to nearly fill Target Center but still less than 10 percent of the problem. Road and transit spending account for 7,900 jobs; we’d get 6,900 more teachers, police and firefighters, plus 3,600 jobs from school renovations. The single economist quoted doesn’t quibble with the math; no political opponents are heard from. By the way, if Minnesota got a proportional share of the estimated 1.9 million created jobs (1.7 percent) it would equal 32,300. So why are we getting about half that? Minnesota is nearer the bottom, per capita.

Meanwhile, the Strib’s Dee DePass says just 12 percent of local employers will hire in 2011’s fourth quarter, nosing out the 11 percent who will lay off. It’s the worst Manpower Employment Outlook in at least a year, and Minneapolis-St. Paul is weaker than our ag-booming state as a whole. St. Paul-based Cerenity Senior Care got a jump on the layoffs, ejecting 300 workers and 187 residents while closing two east-metro nursing homes, the PiPress’s Christopher Snowbeck reports.

It’s not every day a crime reporter finds a friend’s name in a death investigation. Monday was that day for the PiPress’ Brady Gervais.

Remember the jerks who pried letters off a 35W memorial wall? KARE has a pretty good explainer of how the letters are being more securely attached.

Despite allowing lakefront property owners to pave over more surfaces, MPR’s Jennifer Vogel reports, Crow Wing County has gone from lax to having “one of the most progressive” shoreline development ordinances in the state. The runoff-related rules are modeled on statewide standards former Gov. Tim Pawlenty rejected. After succumbing to the development boom, lake associations are having a positive impact on water quality, Vogel adds. Stephanie Hemphill describes the scope of the problem, and Vogel chronicles farm runoff.

The Strib’s Pat Doyle reports that the Metropolitan Airports Commission paid a $95,512-per-year employee $20,000 during an 11-week work release term for possessing child porn on his home computer. State law “prevents firing a convicted employee unless the crime relates to his job,” so the MAC paid Avery Davis his full pay to stay away. That may be more generous than state law, and Legislative Auditor Jim Nobles says the airport needs a formal policy on such cases.

Mayo Clinic makes a New York Times roundup of health-related campaigns that are giving ad agencies a “shot in the arm.”

Nort spews: The Timberwolves shock the world by hiring the right coach; the Strib’s Jerry Zgoda notes Rick Adelman has a .600-plus winning percentage as an NBA coach and a rooter in Kevin Love, the Wolves’ best player. AP sportswriter Jon Krawczynski helpfully forwards articles on Adelman’s problems in his last stop, and how his protect-the-rock, avoid-fouls style fits with the Wolves. Meanwhile, midwifed by the Strib’s Joe Christensen, Joe Mauer tries again to explain his way out of the p.r. disaster sprung from this very real disaster of a season. Jerry Kill could coach Saturday. Bachmann may have bested Perry, but a Texas team bested our St. Paul Saints for the American Association championship.

Glean creator David Brauer returns to fill in for vacationing Brian Lambert.

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Comments (12)

  1. Submitted by Neal Rovick on 09/13/2011 - 06:56 am.

    I am so absolutely sick of the absolutely salacious manner in which politicians like Mrs. Bachmann intone:

    ….innocent little 12-year old girls be forced to have a government injection through an executive order is just flat out wrong…

    It makes me think that they have major confusion as to the exact nature of the injection.

  2. Submitted by Dennis Tester on 09/13/2011 - 08:12 am.

    Bachmann scored points with both libertarians and social conservatives with her argument against government, through executive order, forcing young girls to have an injection of an HPV vaccine that some doctors have said is dangerous.

    The principle here is not only government mandate, but parental rights (opt-in versus opt-out), especially when there’s a question of the safety of the vaccine, and the proper role of executive order.

  3. Submitted by Jackson Cage on 09/13/2011 - 08:25 am.

    I would prefer they be ordered to go to the Bachmann Clinic, where they just pray away the human papillomavirus.

  4. Submitted by Bill Schletzer on 09/13/2011 - 09:18 am.

    I won’t defend Perry, who I detest, nor the vaccine program, which I would question, but I thought Bachmann looked lame saying he started that program over a $5000 contribution. If anyone has some ‘splainin’ to do and never has fully, it would be Bachamnn talking about farm subsidies, which her family has taken in way bigger amounts than 5k. To me she just looks like a loser on the way out taking pot shots and saying anything possible to get noticed.

    I wonder if that audience would have cheered for a guy who was working hard at a minimum wage job that didn’t offer medical benefits, like many of the new jobs down in Texas, rather than a guy who could afford insurance but chose not to get it. The question was a softball when a hardball was called for.

  5. Submitted by Ray Schoch on 09/13/2011 - 09:31 am.

    “…some doctors have said is dangerous?” Please, Mr. Tester…

    “Some” doctors insist that an all-meat diet is the healthiest. “Some” doctors believe that having more sex is the healthiest lifestyle. “Some” doctors will tell you that orange juice is a health fraud.

    What proportion of physicians believe HPV vaccine to be dangerous? Is there any research to support that conclusion? If there is, let’s see it.

    I’m not enthused about government mandates, and Governor Perry should have used his considerable persuasive talents to secure legislative approval before implementing this policy, but “parental rights” can easily take on grotesque proportions, especially when questions about the safety of a procedure are based, not on science or medical results, but on hearsay and superstition, not to mention prudery. HPV can, and does, kill people. “Opting out” so that your daughter can die of cervical cancer years later strikes me as morally indefensible.

  6. Submitted by Tim Walker on 09/13/2011 - 09:45 am.

    The Tea Partiers in the audience think ill uninsured 30-year-olds should die.

    This makes me extremely ill.

    I guess former Rep. Alan Grayson was right when he said the the GOP health care plan is to “die early.”

    If ever anyone needed proof that the Tea Partiers were savage brutes, here it is.

  7. Submitted by Nathan Roisen on 09/13/2011 - 10:39 am.

    What the Tea Partiers are actually applauding the need for some kind of a mandate, for individuals, to buy health insurance.

    This way, personal responsibility is enshrined in the law, and people like the freeloading 30-something cannot depend on government-funded emergency care that drives up costs for everyone.

    I am interpreting this correctly, right?

  8. Submitted by James Hamilton on 09/13/2011 - 10:43 am.

    September 12, 2011: the day I agreed with Michele Bachmann.

    Requiring vaccinations for a disease which does not constitute a general and immediate threat to public health, without going through a legislative process, is wrong. At a minimum, the public is entitled to an opportunity to be heard on the issue.

  9. Submitted by Lauren Maker on 09/13/2011 - 12:07 pm.

    But government forcing a woman to give birth to a child against her will is fine, right Michele? Oh , she’s not innocent–never mind.

  10. Submitted by Greg Kapphahn on 09/13/2011 - 12:38 pm.

    In listening to the Tea Party debate last night I could only come to one conclusion: each and every one of these candidates is determined to continue the damage begun during the Reagan administration and continued in spades by the Bush/Cheney regime,…

    determined to move the US as rapidly as possible from a nation whose well-deserved prosperity was shared by the vast majority of its citizens ever deeper into an economic/governmental system which wipes out the middle class (dropping those folks into abject poverty),…

    and in which the only “prosperous” people who remain are the most worthless, lazy, selfish, self-serving and psychologically dysfunctional among the fabulously wealthy.

    These candidates come across almost as if they’re hostile takeover artists who, like so many who came before them, want to take over the US as if it were a competing corporation in order to close it down and lay off all it’s people.

    It used to be that the US sometimes attempted to do this to other nations, to eliminate our international competition by various means, often unethical and immoral,…

    but I can’t fathom what it is that has so warped so many of our “conservative” Tea Party types, as to cause them now to want to do this to their fellow citizens here in the United States,…

    and to believe that, somehow, their own livelihoods and well being will remain unaffected by their wanton destruction of the citizens of the US (which, although their warped, dysfonic worldview precludes their noticing it, includes themselves).

    When I heard the audience’s cheering of Perry’s massive numbers of executions in Texas in the last debate and their cries and cheering at the idea that an uninsured 30-year-old with serious handicapping injuries should just be allowed to die, I couldn’t help but think WHAT THE H__L IS WRONG WITH THESE PEOPLE?!

    Weren’t these some of the same people who were SO DETERMINED to keep Terry Schiavo alive that they held a special session of congress just to try to force their will on her husband?

    If they had realized she was a “charity” case would they have been screaming “yank out the feeding tube; let her die?”

    Have so many people in America become so massively dysfonic that they will elect this type of psychologically-dysfunctional leader and cheer lustily, to the point of sounding insane, while the tricksters buried within those leaders (and their supporters) laugh wickedly and gleefully as they successfully inspire their hosts to destroy this nation in which we all live?

    More and more I fear this is the case. If we give any of these candidates the power to do so, they will destroy us.

  11. Submitted by Jeff Klein on 09/13/2011 - 01:40 pm.

    “does not constitute a general and immediate threat to public health”

    Really? 3,700 dead women a year beg to differ.

  12. Submitted by will lynott on 09/13/2011 - 07:38 pm.

    I recall with amusement the (few) small (minded) towns in MN (Brainerd comes to mind) who were so incensed over the fluoridation requirement that they went to court, brandished signs, and in other ways displayed their abysmal (and willful, and stupefyingly smug) ignorance as they staunchly held out for their inalienable right to raise their kids to a lifetime of drilling, filling, and extraction, just to show “the guvmint” that they weren’t knuckling under.

    I’m sure their kids thank them every day, as they head for their next dental appointment.

    My kids grew up cavity-free, BTW. Every one. A periodic cleaning, that’s all. Fuoride in the water took care of everything.

    If people like this were putting only themselves in harm’s way, I wouldn’t even peep. But they arrogate unto themselves the right to make decisions for those who are too young to do so, which may and probably will have repercussions long after this debate is over.

    It’s more of the truly sobering Republican anti-science-pro-faith mindset, but more than that, it’s more of the “I hate government even when it’s right” crap from the lunatic fringe that has taken over the R party. I feel for those kids.

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