Bachmann bats eyes at Iowa

Last modified: 11/29/2011 12:00:00 AM
In the week since Michelle Bachmann's memoir hit bookshelves, eager readers have combed through Core of Convictions for the most tantalizing tidbits from the candidate's life. In the book's 206 pages - which are sprinkled with 109 exclamation points, according to one blogger - Bachmann shares her rise from humble roots to White House ambitions.

Here are some highlights:

• Bachmann's great-great-grandfather won a Kansas farm from Jesse James in a game of poker. According to Kaitlin Olson from The American Prospect, Bachmann writes that the game between James and her ancestor, Halvor Munson, was played on a river raft. A Munson family genealogist has confirmed that the two men did meet, but the poker game may be just family lore, according to Olson.

• Throughout the book, Bachmann shows her undying devotion to Iowa, a state she now hopes will be instrumental in her quest for the White House. Bachmann's family moved from there to Minnesota when she was 12.

According to the magazine This Week, here's how Bachmann remembers reacting to the news:

"I don't want to leave Iowa. I love living in Iowa. Iowa is home - everything I know. It's family, friends, church. A happy place. A wonderful place. I never want to be anywhere else. And when I die, I want to be buried in the Garden of Memories Cemetery, alongside my grandparents," Bachmann writes.

• Bachmann is a mother of five. And as she writes in her book, her two sons were 5 and 2 in 1998. Maybe. Olson points out that Bachmann later says the boys were born five years apart.

• Bachmann chronicles, in "touching detail," her relationship with husband, Marcus, according to David A. Graham from The Daily Beast.

"She drops some entertaining details - like the fact that she gave the suit he wore to their wedding away to Goodwill (she never liked it, she says - it was dark blue velour, but 'hey, this was the seventies!')," Graham writes.

• The word "ObamaCare" is used 51 times in the book, according to This Week. Not surprisingly, Bachmann dishes out her fair share of criticism against the legislation and its Democratic champions. But as the magazine points out, she also fires a shot at former president George W. Bush, saying his administration embraced a kind of "bailout socialism."

"It was painful to find out John McCain too favored the TARP bailout. . . . Here was no 'maverick' moment. The same disappointing stance was taken by the Republican leadership in the House," she writes.

• The reader is given a sampling of Michelle Bachmann's legislative highlights, including the Light Bulb Freedom of Choice Act of 2008. Bachmann rallied against compact fluorescent light bulbs, which she says "aren't light bulbs at all: they're squiggly-shaped things and sort of dark even when lit." According to Olson, Bachmann raises concerns that the traces of mercury in the light bulbs could turn a home into a "hazmat site."

• Bachmann gives a nod to Sarah Palin. "Sarah and I realized that we had a lot in common," Bachmann writes, according to This Week. "We shared the same firm faith; we both had carved out political careers thanks to our supportive husbands. In addition, we both had five biological kids."

The book, released Nov. 21, is off to a slow sales start locally. At Gibson's bookstore, no one has purchased any of the five available copies.

"We haven't had any activity on it," said owner Michael Herrmann.

A manager at Books-A-Million in Concord said the memoir's sales are average there.

But Hermann pointed out that best-seller lists, like polls, have a tendency to fluctuate.

"You never know," he said. "She could do something that could be a real game changer and then we'd be out of stock and scrambling."

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