Michele Bachmann: Too Crazy for the GOP?

Recently, Rep. Michele Bachmann has been attempting to play the McCarthy card, probably for much the same reason that “Tailgunner Joe” did back in the 1950s. But while McCarthy whipped up a Red Menance, Bachmann is worried about “deep penetration” of the US Government by Muslims.

McCarthy claimed to have a list of 205 suspected communists. Bachmann seems to have just one possible radical Muslim plant: Huma Abedin, an aid to Hillary Clinton. Here’s Alex Seitz-Wald on the insane troll logic behind this accusation:

As evidence, she pointed to Abedin’s late father, Professor Syed Z. Abedin, and a 2002 Brigham Young University Law Review article about his work. Bachmann points to a passage saying Abedin founded an organization that received the “quiet but active support” of the the former director of the Muslim World League, an international NGO that was tied to the Muslim Brotherhood in Europe in the 1970s through 1990s. So, to connect Abedin to the Muslim Brotherhood, you have to go through her dead father, to the organization he founded, to a man who allegedly supported it, to the organization that man used to lead, to Europe in the 1970s and 1990s, and finally to the Brotherhood.

Add your own Kevin Bacon joke here.

To their credit, many high profile Republicans have spoken out against this, including John Boehner and John McCain. But so far Bachmann has shown no signs of backing down, and she has the Tea Party behind her. Just recently, when McCain called Bachmann’s allegations, “nothing less than an unwarranted and unfounded attack on an honorable woman,” one Tea Party leader began calling for his ouster. From HuffPo:

Wes Harris, the founder and chairman of the Original North Phoenix Tea Party, now says McCain’s words have given him grounds to mount an effort to unseat the longtime senator.

In an interview with the Arizona Capitol Times, Harris called McCain an “embarrassment,” before laying out a variety of unapologetic anti-Islamic sentiments.

[...]

“Go to hell, Senator, it’s time for you to take your final dirt nap,” Harris concludes.

Stay classy there, Mr. Harris.

But it’s not just the Tea Party wackos. Recently, Texas Representative Louie Gohmert lashed out at McCain, accusing him of not understanding an accusing letter written by Bachmann:

“Well, it’s obvious that John McCain didn’t even read the letter because of what he said in accusing Michele and us of making these horrible accusations,” Gohmert told conservative radio host Dennis Miller on Tuesday.

“And I wish some of these numbnuts would go out and read the letter before they make these horrible allegations about the horrible accusations we’re making.”

He added: “But we also know that John McCain himself had said back in the early stages of stuff going on in Egypt that he was, in his words, ‘unalterably opposed to helping the Muslim Brotherhood.’ Well, obviously the unalterable person has been altered, so he is OK with it now.”

Bachmann may be the catalyst for the continuing breakdown of the GOP. I have a great deal of sympathy for Huma Adebine, who has recently been placed under guard, but it is still fascinating to watch.

  • http://www.laughinginpurgatory.com/ Andrew Hall

    Maybe she’s not too crazy, but ahead of the curve in terms of a rabid fascist wave?

  • kessy_athena

    She’s either crazy or a completely amoral political (censored). Of course, the two aren’t mutually exclusive.

    Don’t tell me Boehner is actually growing a backbone and standing up to the lunatic fringe that’s been running his party of late? I’ve been wondering just how far they’d have to go before people like him just couldn’t stomach it anymore and finally speak up.

    • Raymond

      Best way to keep folks from looking at you is to point at someone else, so what is Bachmann hiding anyway?

  • Lester Ballard

    “Deep penetration; something that Marcus . . . never mind.

  • vasaroti

    As so often happens, Jon Stewart had the best comeback:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UIbrE3yiNpk

  • Yoav

    Louie Gohmert is the guy they brought in to make Michelle Bachmann sound rational in comparison to.

  • Brian K

    My fear is that kessy_athena nails it. I honestly wish I had the money to emigrate to New Zealand…someplace as far away from the United States as possible. Not even Canada is enough (Canada is becoming crazy, too, as the oil wealth contaminates the culture and gives the worst elements in Canadian culture more power).

  • Brian K

    I meant “Andrew Hall” is right. Mea culpa

  • http://leavingfundamentalism.wordpress.com Jonny Scaramanga

    You mention the breakdown of the GOP. I’m watching this from Britain, and it doesn’t seem like the Republican lurch towards the Right/Crazy is hurting them. Is the situation different on the ground?

    • kessy_athena

      Well, so far it doesn’t seem to be really changing things electorally. Although we’ve only had one federal election since this all began, so it’s a little hard to tell. Also keep in mind that most Americans don’t pay that much attention to politics and aren’t real knowledgeable about things like economics or foreign policy, so crazy statements may not have an immediate effect. I do think that there’s a growing perception that the GOP has become dominated by people who are ideological and unwilling to compromise. Of course, some people think that’s a good thing.

    • Rich Wilson

      The problem is our entrenched two party system. With only two choices, “your” party has to really go off the edge in either direction to lose you. My view of the current situation is that the GOP can go pretty far right without losing the center-right to the Democrats. And the Democrats can stick pretty close to center to not lose the extreme left. I’m sure my perspective as a Canadian raised leftist skews those relative positions, but the basic idea is that the party that most aligns with you really has to piss you off before you’re going to jump ship.

      I think the decision for most people ends up being who you’re NOT going to vote for. Unfortunately this country isn’t ready for real election reform like ranked voting and proportional representation. Heck, here in California, most races (not POTUS) will only have two candidates on the ballot. And write-ins, although accepted, are not counted.

  • Brian K

    To paraphrase Saint George Carlin…”Maybe it’s not the politicians that are the problem….Maybe it’s the people.” It’s honestly a vicious circle…a significant part of the population want to believe crazy things. So, the politicians pander, the press propagandizes, people’s prejudices are amplified, and things get crazier in a self-reinforcing cycle.

    • Raymond

      What do you expect in a world where a majority of humans believe in superstitious gods and sky fairies who are supposed to protect them and supply a place in the afterlife for them?Of course, it’s the people. I’m amazed that science has done so well in an atmosphere of wishful thinking, astrology, NCCAM treatments for the sick, profits above all else, our glorified feudalist system, and on and on. Humankind is on the downslope of the great effects The Enlightenment produced for humanity and its understanding of the natural world. If reality contradicts the holy books, go with the Holy books, or so I have heard from thosesame religious people whose paramount view of life is based on delusion and superstition, and they are of the MAJORITY of humans on the planet

  • TrickQuestion

    She has such pretty white eyes.

  • http://www.agnostic-library.com/ma/ PsiCop

    The way it looks to me, it’s not that Mrs Bachmann is “too crazy” for the GOP. Rather, it’s that McCain and maybe even Boehner may be “too moderate” for it. By my count there are more Republicans supporting her and the crazy scenario she’s yammering about, than those who think it’s insane Beckish thinking. I just don’t see the GOP fracturing over this, and I don’t see Bachmann and her ilk being carved out of it.

    Once upon a time, guys like Frank Gaffney — who came up with the notion that Bachmann is now pushing relentlessly — would have been ignored by the GOP as a whole or laughed off as the asylum escapees they are. That’s no longer true. He and others like him have the ears of influential Republicans … lots of them. For every McCain or Boehner willing to dismiss their insane gibbering, there are ten more who listen intently and hang on their every word.

    It’s pretty f-ing frightening, if you ask me.

  • Keulan

    Too crazy for the GOP? I don’t think so. The Republican Party consists of more people like Bachmann than people like McCain right now. What was once the lunatic fringe has become the norm for the Republicans.

  • Len

    If Bachmann is playing Kevin Bacon with Huma Adebine, isn’t there someone over there (ie, in the US) who knows enough about her and her crazy family / hair-dresser / gun club / pet gibbon / whatever to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that she’s linked to Islam herself? Possibly even that she’s a direct descendent of Mo?


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