Michele Bachmann Faces Campaign Ethics Investigation as Former Staffers Lash Out
The Daily Beast broke a fairly damning story Monday morning about Minnesota Representative Michele Bachmann. The report reveals that federal investigators working on behalf of the Office of Congressional Ethics are investigating the congresswoman's campaign about potential intentional finance violations. According to former Bachmann staffers questioned by the investigators, the allegations include improper fund transfers and illegal payments made during Bachmann's failed 2012 presidential campaign. One such allegation is that Iowa state Senator Kent Sorenson, her Iowa campaign manager, received under the table payment for his support. Her lawyers, of course, are denying any wrongdoing, at least on Bachmann's part.
"There are no allegations that the Congresswoman engaged in any wrongdoing," McGinley said. "We are constructively engaged with the OCE and are confident that at the end of their Review the OCE Board will conclude that Congresswoman Bachmann did not do anything inappropriate."
That may or may not be true, but, as the Daily Intelligencer pointed out, the juicy parts of The Daily Beast's story come from Bachmann's former staffers, who apparently have nothing but terrible things to say about their former boss. Here are some highlights.
On her recent political embarrassments:
"She's the Republican Dennis Kucinich," says one longtime Bachmann senior staffer. "Politics is like jumping off a diving board. You rise, you plateau, but at the end of the day everyone comes down. Some people make a splash and some people belly flop. She belly flopped. And you don't get a second chance at the diving board."
On her record as one of Congress' most prolific liars:
"She doesn't use the most credible sources," explains one former staffer, detailing Bachmann's reliance on stories from the conspiracy-peddling WorldNetDaily to shape her worldview, "and she tends to listen to the last person who talks to her." Bachmann is also a member of the House Intelligence Committee.
On what it's like to work for the congresswoman:
"She's always been one of the most difficult members to work for-very high maintenance, almost demeaning to a point," says another former staffer. "And that was amplified 10 times over due to the presidential campaign. It was like she was a different person. You didn't recognize her. All I can tell you is that it was the weirdest thing I've ever seen. It was by far the most bizarre campaign I've ever been a part of."
Sounds like fun! And of course, all this is on top of other recent allegations, including that her campaign stole private email lists and refused to pay its staffers.
[Image via AP]