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Bachmann not pleased with 'liberal courts' on redistricting

Reaction to Tuesday’s court-ordered redistricting will continue to refill the news cycle for a while. For the moment, we have CNN’s Kevin Liptak reporting that Our Favorite Congresswoman is not pleased with the “liberal courts” who put Stillwater in the new 4th District: “[Michele] Bachmann characterized the change as a political move designed to favor Democrats in an email to supporters. ‘Just as we suspected, the liberal courts have changed the makeup of Minnesota's Congressional districts,’ Bachmann wrote. ‘The courts' liberal bias was evident by cherry-picking the districts and going so far as to draw my home — where I have raised my family and represented in Congress for the past six years outside the new sixth district.’ Bachmann said she would ‘take every necessary step to correct this injustice.’ ” Beginning with, just guessing here, a fund-raising appeal.

Dennis Lien at the PiPress writes: “[Congresswoman Betty] McCollum, meanwhile, said she was pleased with her redrawn district, which is geographically larger than the existing one. "It's a great district,'' said McCollum. "It takes East Metro right up to Wisconsin. It's compact and it's a gateway corridor directly into St. Paul and the Twin Cities.'' The south suburban 2nd District will shift southeasterly, exchanging Carver County and half of Rice County for Wabasha County and a portion of the existing 4th District covering West St. Paul, South St. Paul and a couple of other cities. Republican Rep. John Kline has represented it since 2003. The 1st District, meanwhile, will still run across southern Minnesota, although it will lose Wabasha County and two counties and part of a third in the southwest to the 7th District covering western Minnesota. However, it will get LeSueur County and a portion of Rice County, including Faribault.”

At Politico, Alex Isenstadt says: “Bachmann is well-positioned for reelection under a newly-drawn Minnesota congressional map. Under the plan, Bachmann, a third-term congresswoman who waged an unsuccessful bid for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination, will run in a Republican-friendly district in the suburban Twin Cities area that will actually be slightly safer for her than her current one. ... The new map is expected to do little to change the composition of the eight-seat House delegation, which is divided evenly between the two parties. Aside from Bachmann and McCollum, the only member who will see a marked shift is GOP Rep. John Kline, whose 2nd district seat will become slightly more Democratic-friendly.”

At the AP, Patrick Condon writes: “Bachmann said the national prominence she gained on the presidential stump paves the way for her to be an even more outspoken advocate for fiscal conservatism in Congress. ... ‘I embody the voice of the 6th Congressional District,’ Bachmann said. ‘I faithfully took that voice all across the United States, and amplified that very common sense Minnesota heartland voice of not spending more money than we take in, not increasing anyone's taxes and having the government live within its means.’ Bachmann, a favorite of tea party conservatives who has often clashed with establishment Republicans, fared better in the court-drawn map than the one drawn by Minnesota's GOP-controlled Legislature in 2011. ... Bachmann's presidential bid will hand campaign fodder to her eventual opponent. She missed 71 percent of congressional votes between when she declared her presidential candidacy last June and when she dropped out in early January. Also, while campaigning in Iowa she repeatedly stressed her roots in that state directly to Minnesota's south. While members of Congress aren't required to live in the districts they represent, Minnesota state lawmakers do face that requirement. Of the state's 201 legislators, 46 were thrown into districts with fellow incumbents, including the Republican House majority leader, Matt Dean.”

At MPR, Tom Scheck reports: “Two of those paired up in the House are Republican Majority Leader Matt Dean and Rep. Carol McFarlane, R-White Bear Lake. McFarlane was still studying the map, and said she was accepting of the new boundaries. ‘It looks like all of North Oaks is in there now, and Dellwood’, McFarlane said. ‘So, basically I have the same district I have now, except for the south side of White Bear.’ McFarlane did not say whether she will challenge Dean. Many other lawmakers were still poring over the new maps.”

At the Human Events website (“Powerful Conservative Voices”), John Gizzi says:, “In choosing to run in turf that she described as a ‘swing district,’ Bachmann pulled no punches about the likelihood of a strong challenge in November. Two years ago, Tarryl [Clark] (former Assistant State Democratic Leader) opposed Bachmann and raised more money than any Democratic U.S. House challenger in the country. ‘I don’t know if she’ll run again or not,' said Bachmann. [Clark] had earlier taken a Duluth residence in the nearby 8th District and signaled she plans to run against freshman Republican Rep. Chip Cravaack.  Bachmann, however, is not so sure [Clark] might change her plans and seek a rematch. We asked Bachmann if spending so much time on her presidential campaign last year and up to the Iowa caucuses in January [would] be a hindrance in her re-election bid. ‘No, not at all,’ she replied, ‘In seeking national office, I was a clear common-sense voice of our congressional district and, I feel, made a significant contribution to the national debate: I called for full-scale repeal of ObamaCare — you can’t issue waivers or executive order away something that is one-sixth of the economy — and for full-scale repeal of Dodd-Frank, and I am the chief sponsor of repeal legislation.’ ” And on that she does have a point.

The Strib’s official take on the five judges’ redistricting plan says: “Our first-blush assessment is largely positive. To its credit, the panel opted for minimal changes in well-established political patterns — rejecting, for example, a Republican proposal to put the entire northern third of the state into a single district. It kept rural parts of the state distinct from the metro area. The legislative map allows for a record-high 19 ‘minority opportunity’ districts, with at least 30 percent of their voting-age population nonwhite. … This page supported the preference voiced by St. Cloud residents at a citizens' commission hearing last fall for their fast-growing city to be separated from the metro area and attached to the Seventh District, where it sat in previous years. The redistricting panel did not agree, and opted instead to sever southern Washington County from the Sixth District. The judges seemed to be saying that St. Cloud's future is more closely tied to the metro area than to northwestern Minnesota. It's hard to fault that presumption.”

At Ripple in Stillwater, blogger Karl Bremer looks at the re-drawn map and says: “Bachmann’s marquee issue — the $700-million Boondoggle Bridge across the St. Croix River — will be null and void for her if she decides to run in the 6th CD, as the proposed new bridge site in Oak Park Heights, the City of Stillwater and the old Stillwater Lift Bridge are now in the 4th CD — McCollum’s district. That will leave the Star-Tribune and Pioneer Press newspaper editorialists, along with Stillwater Mayor Ken Harycki and his cronies, looking like fools for chastising McCollum to stay out of the bridge debate because it’s not in her district. This scenario would clearly make the bridge debate McCollum’s issue and not Bachmann’s.”

Chick-fil-A has a cult following? The Strib’s Wendy Lee says, “McDonald's may be gone from the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, but Southern fast-food chicken chain Chick-fil-A is scheduled for arrival this spring. Chick-fil-A, known for its hand-breaded chicken sandwiches, lemonade and supreme customer service, has a passionate customer following. The chain's mascots are cows that hold signs encouraging people to eat more chicken. ‘We're really excited about it,’ said John Greer, the airport's assistant director of concessions and business development. ‘Their chicken is just delicious. Their sandwiches are phenomenal.’ Chick-fil-A will be on Concourse C at Lindbergh Terminal in late April or early May. The restaurant will be in a space formerly occupied by Godfather's Pizza and A&W.” I’ll get excited when I can pack three double cheese In-N-Out Burgers, animal style, for a plane ride out of Minnesota.

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Comments (18)

I'm not "pleased" with the

I'm not "pleased" with the redistricting either. I'm still stuck with Bachmann not representing me and I have 2 incumbent Republicans for MN House now in my district. Bachmann needs to go away.

Also not pleased

I did get my wish - she no longer lives in my district. Unfortunately she can, and will, contiue to run in the 6th. I was hoping she would represent her home state where she said her values were developed.

"Liberal Courts"

"Liberal" Tim Pawlenty appointed "liberal" Lorie Gildae who appointed the following "liberal" panel:

- Wilhelmina Wright, who was appointed by "liberal" Gov. Jesse Ventura (Independence Party);
- Ivy Bernhardson, who was appointed by "liberal" Gov. Tim Pawlenty (Republican);
- James Florey, who was appointed by "liberal" Gov. Arne Carlson (Republican);
- Edward Lynch, who was appointed by actual liberal Gov. Rudy Perpich (DFL); and
- John Rodenberg, who was appointed by "liberal" Gov. Ventura (IP).

I think we're all lucky this panel of reds didn't turn the means of production over to the proletariat after they completed their coup.

Sweet irony

After 13 years of fecklessness, McCollum finally gloms onto a high profile issue, only to have it end up being opposite the best interests of her new district.....someone should see if she'd like some bacon with those eggs!

Not ironic

but it is possible that a moderate Republican could beat McCollum in the new district, given the addition of Woodbury and Stillwater. It isn't as if Norm Coleman wasn't ever the Mayor of St. Paul. Unfortunately for McCollum, her word on the new St. Croix River bridge is now out and she'll have to run on her opposition to it, which may help to defeat her given that a majority of people in Stillwater favor building the new bridge now. So I expect a Republican to emerge as a serious challenger to McCollum, especially considering the fact that Governor Dayton and Senators Franken & Kloubachar favor the new bridge.

Will McCollum influence the bridge at all?

From what I read in other reports the bridge issue has to be settled by March or go through the process all over again. Either Bachmann gets the approval now or the funds will be used elsewhere.

In her 13 years in Congress

Rep.McCollum has not influenced a single piece of legislation, Dan. But she's chosen this one to make her debut with. The fact that it just happens to be something she is 180 degrees out of step with her new constituents on is what I find so amusing.

Amusing that Mr. Swift would use the word

feckless to describe Representative McCollum. Powerless, ineffective, helpless?

It is Mrs Bachmann who is feckless and has to move, Mr. Swift. Her legislative record is pitiful as was her performance during her egomaniacal presidential run.

And it is telling how much respect for Mrs Bachmann, her colleagues in Congress have for her. In case you haven't noticed, she has zero credibility among her congressional Republican colleagues who are sitting on their hands in this matter.

Mrs Bachmann, had she chosen to run against Ms. McCollum, would get clobbered. In fact she could never win any state-wide office in Minnesota. Otherwise there is a glorious opportunity right now for her to run against Klobuchar. The GOP hats currently in the ring are all size six.

Not sure where you learned English, "Prof"...

The Webster's dictionary definition, for your education:

feck·less  [fek-lis] adjective
1. ineffective; incompetent; futile: feckless attempts to repair the plumbing.
2. having no sense of responsibility; indifferent; lazy.

In the present discussion regarding Rep. McCollum, I'm referring to #1.

Glad to help; I'm a helper.

Come on, Moderators

Really, moderators, this has to stop. Mr. Swift has a long history of personal attacks in the comment section. They degrade the quality of this site. Please put a firmer leash on him. Thanks.

Ah, Michele.

Apparently the liberal court that was out to get you was also too ignorant to know that you could run for re-election in the 6th District wherever you live.

“Paranoia runs deep, into your life it will creep…”
Buffalo Springfield.


Pronounced "Minn-eye-o-wan". A Congressional representative whose geographic attachment varies with political requirements.

The bridge is far from a local issue

I'm sure the residents of Stillwater and other towns along the St. Croix will be delighted to have Betty McCollum officially on their side. The Giant Bridge would cost millions more and would disfigure the protected environment that is the River.

The millions saved by building the smaller and completely adequate bridge favored by Betty McCollum, Keith Ellison, and a Stillwater citizens' group could be used instead to create many jobs in repairing the roads and bridges that need work all around the state.

Yes, I see Bernice

The residents of Stillwater, Woodbury, St. Elmo will be happy as clams to have Keith Ellison and Betty McCollum deciding what is completely adequate for them.

Good call.

Charge $5 For Each Crossing

I don't see how it is in the interests of residents of the new or old fourth congressional district to pay for half of an over-priced bridge to allow Minnesotans to move to Wisconsin and work in Minnesota. Make it a toll bridge or let Wisconsin pay for 80% of it. Or perhaps the real estate developers on western Wisconsin can pay for it.

Funny how some conservatives are ready to abandon fiscal restraint on this one.

There is no shortage of available on the eastern side of the St. Croix

It is Lake Elmo

Mr Swift, for your education.

And residents of the communities mentioned will be no happier to have you, who live in St. Paul, making decisions about what is good for them, than Rep. Ellison. Although as a voting member of Congress, Mr. Ellison actually has more say in the matter than you. There is an issue of conflict between the bridge project and the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act.

Ms. McCollum will most likely be re-elected, since Ms. Bachmann has declined to face McCollum who would undoubtedly defeat her. It would probably be best for interested residents to express their opinions on the bridge during the upcoming campaign. Despite your refusal, Mr. Swift, to face reality, there are a great number of people who disagree with the proposed new St. Croix bridge project.

Some even live in Stillwater. For example: Karl Bremer, the co-author of the book: "The Madness of Michelle Bachmann." It is published by Wiley and available in paperback from Amazon: The reviews are hilarious.

Highly recommended.


Mr. Swift thinks that a moderate Republican has a chance in McCollum's redrawn district because of the bridge? Well, McCollum has been winning with 60% or more of the vote and she is adding a small portion of Bachmann's district that will comprise about 10% of her new district. The part of Bachmann's district that was added is the more moderate part of Bachmann's old 6th District. Barring a major campaigning error, I doubt it will be close.

Michele Bachmann apparently composed her fundraising letter before the maps came out. The most sensible and least change option was to add part of the Sixth to the Fourth, and according to Ms. Bachmann, it is the fault of "liberal courts".

Finally, the Stillwater bridge is controversial. I doubt that the split is any more than 55-45. Like most things political, it is far from a "no-brainer".

Go Away!

Mrs Bachmann has embarrassed our state on the national stage for years now. I cant get on a plane without hearing something to the effect of "How did that nutjob get elected?" The redistricting was done with a population shift, and SHE ACTUALLY FOUGHT THAT, as you will recall by appealing to the public to NOT FILL OUT THEIR CENSUS! It bothers her that we actually have a democracy left, that we have the right NOT to choose to have a whacked-out dim-bulb theocrat represent us if we so choose. Bachmann is a Dominionist, a liar, a trojan-horse candidate just like Scott Walker was over in Wisconsin. She cant win without her precious, obviously gerrymandered 6th district no longer intact, so now she will have to try to win on a level playing field. Americans for Prosperity ( Koch Bros) will have their work cut out for them this time. I'd just run ads with footage of all the stupid things she said on the national campaign trail and definitely not hire the same morons that ran Taryl Clark's campaign again. Fox News wont even take her because she's just too stupid