Michele Bachmann wouldn’t say last night whether she’d authorize military action against Iran after the recent terror threat if she were president but said President Obama “sent signals of weakness,” that could lead to trouble.
She was interviewed last night by Erin Burnett on CNN.
BURNETT: Well, let me start with Vice President Biden this morning on ABC was talking about the terror plot. He said it was an outrageous act and that the Iranians “will have to be held accountable.” That’s the quote.
If you were president, would military action be on the table?
BACHMANN: Well, if I was president, I wouldn’t have taken my eye off of the number one issue in the Middle East, which is Iran obtaining nuclear weapons. The problem with the Obama administration is that they’ve put significant daylight between Israel and the United States from day one of the Obama presidency.
So the president, unfortunately, sent signals of weakness and focused on Israel building apartments on their own land as opposed to Iran obtaining a nuclear weapon. That’s been the problem. And when you have a nation that’s a hostile nation seeing the United States from a lens point of weakness, then that could lead to actions that are absolutely heinous, like we’re seeing today.
BURNETT: Do you think — it seems there’s a lot of confusion, though, or at least uncertainty about how high this goes in the Iranian government.
If it really goes to the top and it was a terror attack that, sure, a Saudi ambassador was targeted, but at least 100 American casualties were considered perfectly acceptable, if that’s really what happened and it goes to the highest echelons of the Iranian government, how would we avoid having this be something that led to military conflict?
BACHMANN: Obviously, this is not acceptable. And I — I am privileged to sit on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. We deal with the nation’s classified secrets and we deal with the problems and the hostilities that are being faced from around the world.
I mean consider what this is. This is an international assassination plot on U.S. soil in the nation’s capital and potentially we were looking at targets being various embassies. This is a very serious issue that needs to be addressed seriously.
On the debt ceiling:
BURNETT: Ultimately, Congresswoman Bachmann, that fight in Washington could have had some positives, forcing our country to address the debt problem. But I spoke to every economic expert I could and they said that the cost to America of that fight, a credit downgrade that’s going to cost every American money in the form of higher interest rates down the road, hurt our country and the debt ceiling debate made the world see America as a government which is failing.
Was it worth it?
BACHMANN: But you see, we didn’t have to have the credit downgrade. The credit downgrade came because the ratings agencies saw that Washington was not serious about addressing the debt. That shows that I was right, not that I was wrong, because we had sufficient revenues coming into the Treasury so that we could pay off the interest on the debt. There is no need for the United States to default. What we needed to do was prioritize our spending.
You see, your viewers need to understand that the United States government is foolishly overspending by 40 percent every year. Imagine, for your viewers, if you were spending 40 percent more than what you took in or if your business spent 40 percent more than what you took in. Most Americans couldn’t last two months spending 40 percent more than what they’re taking in.
That’s what countries like Greece are doing.
And on social issues:
BURNETT: I wanted to ask you about something, though, Congresswoman. You’ve been consistent on social issues and talked about yourself as a social conservative. You’ve said you support a constitutional amendment making a marriage between a man and a woman.
Some Republicans feel social issues are too dominant on the Republican Party platform.
And I’m wondering, even aside from your personal beliefs, do you worry that you’re alienating potential Republican voters by making issues like abortion or gay marriage such a key part of your candidacy?
BACHMANN: Well, you know, this year, unquestionably, the top issues are jobs and the economy. And that’s something that I’ve said all along.
But for many Americans, a key issue for them is how a candidate feels about the life issue. I’m — I am pro-life. Or how someone feels about the marriage issue. I believe in marriage between a man and a woman.
And so as a candidate, I don’t dance around about my opinions and my views. I think that it’s only fair that the voter knows where we stand. And so I’m only too happy to let people know where I stand on these issues.
I believe in religious liberty, for instance, that all people have the right to be able to express their faith freely in the marketplace of ideas.