I don't know why Bachmann amuses me so, but she does. Even her own party is embarrassed by her — so much so that they're now going public. From Think Progress:
Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) has been bragging about the fact that she plans not to answer Census questions this year, which is a violation of federal law punishable with a fine up to $5,000. Bachmann has been mocked by Stephen Colbert and criticized harshly by the largest Minnesota newspaper for her conspiratorial stance.
Now, in the latest rebuke of her off-the-wall claims about the Census, three out of the four House Republicans on the subcommittee that oversees the Census have released a statement calling her boycott plan “llogical, illegal and not in the best interest of our country”:
“Boycotting the constitutionally mandated Census is illogical, illegal and not in the best interest of our country,” Reps. Patrick McHenry (N.C.), Lynn Westmoreland (Ga.) and John Mica (Fla.), members of the Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on Information Policy, Census and National Achieves, said in a statement Wednesday.
“[A] boycott opens the door for partisans to statistically adjust Census results,” the trio’s statement said. “The partisan manipulation of census data would irreparably transform the Census from being the baseline of our entire statistical system into a tool used to wield political power in Washington.”
According to Roll Call, the three Republicans “approached Bachmann privately over the past few weeks and asked her to stop the boycott,” but “decided to go public because Bachmann appeared unfazed by their request.” Bachmann pushed her boycott plan on Monday in an interview with Sean Hannity.
Census officials have been meeting with Bachmann to try to talk her down from her illogical concerns. CongressDaily reports that McHenry even “showed her printed census materials in the attempt to dispel her fears.” But she remained skeptical. A GOP source said, “As long as Fox News keeps calling, she’s going to keep going.”
Love that last quote.
As Stephen Colbert quipped, maybe it's a good thing that Bachmann is boycotting the census count…. because she would probably include the voices in her head as household members.
On this subject, Steve Benen adds today:
Bachmann talked to Sean Hannity on Fox News last night about her anti-census crusade, and returned to one of her favorite arguments: "Sean, you know the one question they don't ask? They [don't] ask, 'are you an American citizen?' … [T]hey could at least ask if we're an American citizen? They don't bother to ask for that. That's why I think people need to read this census for themselves. If you go to my website, michelebachmann, you can read it."
Good idea. If you take Bachmann's advice, visit her website, and read the census, you find the American Community Survey put together by the Census Bureau. Question #7 reads: "Where was this person born?" Question #8 reads, "Is this person a citizen of the United States?"
Bachmann probably should have noticed this before repeatedly going on national television, pleading with people to read the census questions, and railing against the absence of a question that's already there.