'Bachmann confuses N.H., Mass. Concords'

Last modified: 3/13/2011 12:00:00 AM
U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota stood before New Hampshire Republicans with a tea bag clutched in her hand yesterday, but her grasp on Revolutionary War geography wasn't quite as tight.

Before headlining a GOP fundraiser, the possible presidential hopeful told a group of students and conservative activists in Manchester, "You're the state where the shot was heard around the world in Lexington and Concord."

But those first shots of the Revolutionary War were fired in Massachusetts, not New Hampshire.

"So I misplaced the battles Concord and Lexington by saying they were in New Hampshire," Bachmann posted on her Facebook page later. "It was my mistake, Massachusetts is where they happened. New Hampshire is where they are still proud of it!"

Though Bachmann probably wasn't the first to confuse Concord, N.H., with Concord, Mass., her mistake was striking given her roots in the Tea Party movement, which takes its name from the dumping of tea into Boston Harbor by angry American colonists in December 1773, 16 months before the Battle of Lexington Green.

Some 30 miles to the north and with tea bag in hand, Bachmann was greeted with applause when she asked the crowd, "How about a United States president that gets what the American people want in 2012?" and later proclaimed, "Are you in for 2012? I'm in!"

She later clarified that she is committed to denying President Obama a second term, not necessarily running herself. That decision will come by early summer, she said, adding that she was no closer to making it yesterday than she was before her first political trip to New Hampshire.

For the state that holds the earliest presidential primary, it was another day, another Minnesota politician with possible White House aspirations. Bachmann's trip overlapped one day with former governor Tim Pawlenty's latest visit, offering voters a glimpse of their contrasting styles.

Pawlenty, a former two-term governor, has taken a more tradition path to exploring a White House bid: traveling to key states, spreading money to potential allies through his political action committee and publishing a memoir as he left office.

Bachmann, who only recently has begun traveling to early nominating states, rose through the Minnesota ranks on social issues and is a favorite of the Tea Party in Congress, where she is in her third term. A formidable fundraiser, she's also built a national following through her blunt commentary on cable news shows.




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