While discussing abortion, Bachmann makes ‘surprise disclosure’ of her miscarriage

In what Politico calls a “surprise disclosure,” Congresswoman Michele Bachmann talked about having a miscarriage many years ago. The revelation came while she was discussing her opposition to abortion Wednesday night in South Carolina.

Searches of the Star Tribune and Pioneer Press archives show no previous references to her talking about a miscarriage. However, she did make a reference to it in 2008 during a House speech.

The Politico story calls it a first in presidential politics, and the writer, Maggie Haberman, says Bachmann:

…touched on topics that are rarely discussed publicly in politics, and Bachmann is one of a small handful of women who have run for the office. (The closest moment in memory was former First Lady Laura Bush writing about a miscarriage in her memoir, after her husband was in office, and not in front of a crowd on the stump).

The moment, during which the crowd was reportedly still at attention, was a deeply personal description that goes to the quality her supporters most often cite — authenticity.

The story quotes Bachmann, who was at a town hall meeting at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, South Carolina, explaining her opposition to abortion:

 “After our second child was born, we became pregnant with a third baby. And it was an unexpected baby, but of course we were delighted to have this child. And the child was coming along, and we ended up losing that child. And it was devastating for both of us, as you can imagine if any of you have lost a child.

“And at that moment we didn’t think of ourselves as overly career minded or overly materialistic. When we lost that child, it changed us. And it changed us forever.

“So we made a commitment that no matter how many children were brought into our life, we’d receive them because we’re committed to life. And we didn’t know at that time we’d be foster parents, and that one day we’d be parents of 28 children, but we are extremely grateful for that opportunity because you can get money wrong, but you can’t get life wrong. And I am committed to life.”

The story notes that Bachmann and her husband, Marcus, raised five biological children and the youngest just graduated from high school; they’ve also had 23 foster children.

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Comments (6)

  1. Submitted by Paul Brandon on 06/30/2011 - 02:34 pm.

    She’s a lawyer.
    I’m sure that she was legally a parent (for however short a period of time) for 28 children.
    The main point (as stated above) is that her ability to parent large numbers of children is of very limited relevance to her ability to govern. Otherwise we’d elect rabbits.

    I would be curious to see the correlation between number of offspring and the ranking of presidents. I don’t recall that the presidents usually regarded as ‘great’ (e.g. Washington, Lincoln, Roosevelt) were particularly fecund.

    Found some numbers:

    Presidents with the most offspring:
    Tyler: 15
    Harrison: 10
    Hayes: 8
    Garfield: 7

    I’ll rest my case.

  2. Submitted by Paul Brandon on 06/30/2011 - 10:54 am.

    Of course, an abortion is an induced miscarriage.

  3. Submitted by C.S. Senne on 06/30/2011 - 12:14 pm.

    I don’t care how many children this person has, had, or miscarried. I don’t want this person anywhere near the Presidency of this country. Being able to reproduce is not a Constitutional requirement for the office.

  4. Submitted by James Hamilton on 06/30/2011 - 12:30 pm.

    I’d like to see someone challenge Rep. Bachmann, directly, on her claim of being a parent to 28 children.

    The information is out there, but I’ve yet to see anyone ask her for details such as:

    What was the average stay of the foster children?

    What was the greatest number of children you fostered at one time?

    How much did your family receive in each of the 7.5 years you were a licensed foster care family?

    Frankly, the fact that she was a foster care provider means nothing to me in terms of her qualifications for office. Her distortion of that work, however, speaks volumes about her character and her credibility.

  5. Submitted by James Hamilton on 06/30/2011 - 04:59 pm.

    She was a lawyer.

    Lawyer ID 0179863
    Date Admitted 12/19/86
    Last Payment 01/05/09

    Authorized to Practice Law? NOT AUTHORIZED: SUSPENDED FOR NON-PAYMENT OF FEES

    CLE Status VOLUNTARILY RESTRICTED (BY CHOICE)

    Last Name BACHMANN
    First Name MICHELE
    Middle Name MARIE
    Address 1801 JOHNSON DRIVE
    STILLWATER, MN 55082

    Foreign Address? No

    Professional Liability Insurance Lawyer does NOT represent private clients
    Current Disciplinary Status None
    Disciplinary Date

  6. Submitted by Dennis Tester on 07/01/2011 - 11:41 am.

    It certainly is easy to spot the non-parents in these comments, isn’t it?

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