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DFL chair compares Bachmann to Wellstone

The chairman of the Minnesota DFL Party had some unusually kind words for presidential candidate Michele Bachmann on Monday, comparing her to liberal icon Paul Wellstone.
To be clear, DFL chairman Ken Martin dismissed her political ideology, but sa

The chairman of the Minnesota DFL Party had some unusually kind words for presidential candidate Michele Bachmann on Monday, comparing her to liberal icon Paul Wellstone.

To be clear, DFL chairman Ken Martin dismissed her political ideology, but said her consistency as a candidate and lawmaker reminds him of the late Minnesota senator.

“The reason people give someone like a Paul Wellstone some credit and give someone like a Michele Bachmann some credit is because, at the end of the day, they feel that she and someone like Paul, believes honestly what they said and they stood up and fought for what they believed in, not what they felt was the most politically expedient,” Martin said in a press event about Mitt Romney, per MPR.

On this matter, Bachmann and Martin actually agree. Bachmann makes the comparison herself on page 126 of her biography, “Core of Conviction:”

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“For some legislators, when pressure is applied, they grow stronger in their convictions. That was true for some of us on the right, and it was also true for some on the left. For example, during my first term in the state senate, I met U.S. Sen. Paul Wellstone. He was a firebrand leftist, but he had an honest heart. He was not cynical; he was sincere. He told you where he was coming from, and if you disagreed with him, he would respect that disagreement, and do his best to beat you. He was true to his ideology until he and his wife were tragically killed in a plane crash [in 2002].”

Bachmann’s latest campaign talking points have encouraged Republican voters to support a consistently conservative presidential candidate like herself. On the flip side, Democrats have worked to portray Romney, a front-runner, as an inconsistent flip-flopper.

Devin Henry can be reached at dhenry@minnpost.com