After the State of the Union Address, the opposition address will be given by Republican Paul Ryan of Kentucky. This job is often given to party rising stars. Ryan is expected to be a party uniter. After the senator speaks, Michele Bachmann will give her Tea Party Caucus response. Bachmann is noted for for angry, anti-Obama rhetoric. Yahoo News gives us some clues of what might be in store for us after the SOTUA:
A recent analysis by the Pulitzer Prize-winning watchdog site PolitiFact showsthat of the 13 times she’s been fact-checked, “seven of her claims [have been found] to be false and six have been found to be ridiculously false,” says PolitiFact Editor Bill Adair. “I don’t know anyone else that we have checked, more than a couple times, that has never earned anything above a false. She is unusual in that regard.” Among Bachmann’s greatest hits: saying that Obama will hike taxes on small businesses that make $250,000 (“pants on fire”); claiming that “the president of the United States will be taking a trip over to India that is expected to cost the taxpayers $200 million a day” (“false”); and declaring that in the 1970s, “the swine flu broke out… under another Democrat, President Jimmy Carter” (“pants on fire”). Beyond all the easily disprovable falsehoods, Bachmann is famous for simply saying outrageous things: that homosexuality is a “dysfunction”; that Obama is turning America into a “nation of slaves”; that conservatives should “slit their wrists” and be “blood brothers” to defeat health-care reform.
Mainstream Republicans are trying to act like they aren’t bothered by her end run, but they haven’t been real convincing. Consider the recent past:
Bachmann’s post-election maneuvering isn’t particularly surprising; the ultraconservative Minnesotan, who by one estimate appears on national cable once every nine days, is always looking for new ways to get attention. But the response her scheming has received in top GOP circles—a response that would best be described as arctic—suggests that the battle between disgruntled, absolutist Tea Party activists (who want to blow the system up) and their more realistic representatives in Washington (who plan to work within it) is only beginning.
Consider how rank-and-file Republicans have reacted to Bachmann’s recent displays of ambition. As soon as the congresswoman launched her conference-chair campaign, Eric Cantor and Mike Pence—the Indiana pol she would be succeeding in the position—endorsed her rival, Texas Rep. Jeb Hensarling. Boehner put Hensarling on the GOP’s transition team, and left Bachmann out. Sarah Palin declined to endorse Bachmann, with whom she campaigned over the summer. And Ryan circulated a letter to lawmakers and recently elected Republicans asking them to support Hensarling over his opponent. After awhile, Bachmann took the hint and bowed out.
Bachmann can be viewed at the Tea Party Express website where her message will be streamed live as soon as the Republican rebuttal is over Tuesday night. Meanwhile, Republicans are cringing. They don’t need a wild card in the mix. The moderates and liberals are await the sideshow with eager anticipation. They think Bachmann is the gift that keeps on giving because she is totally outrageous. The events tonight will almost be like a triple header– High political theater as it were.
Who will be naughty and who will be nice? Joe Wilson has his dates lined up so we are expecting sterling behavior from him. He announced on Twitter that he will be sitting with Susan Davis (CA-53) and Madeleine Bordallo of Guam. Many of the Supremes are staying home so we won’t be able to count on them to mouth at the president or roll their eyes. That leaves about 500 people to act out. So many choices….so little time.