Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) appeared today on ABC News’s Top Line, where she did not say “no” about the possibility of running for president. But at the same time, based on her other statements in the interview, it seemed like this could be more about seeking a platform to speak on the issues she cares about.
Jonathan Karl asked Bachmann point blank whether she was thinking about running for president.
“I am going to Iowa,” Bachmann responded with a smile. “There’s your answer. I’m going to Iowa.”
Bachmann then said the reason she is going to Iowa was, “What I’m seeing is the focus has been on the personality: Who will be the nominee in 2012?” Instead, she said, the discussion should be about the issues facing the country, and the honing of the overall conservative message — and of course, about making sure that the party will nominate “a courageous constitutional conservative.”
As for the field, she said: “I think we’re going to have a deep bench, and I think we’re just not even at the starting gate. Because who’s announced, after all? Not one person has announced. So we’re not even at the starting gate.”
So, she was asked, how long would she have to make up her mind about whether or not to run? “Excellent question,” said Bachmann. “Because I think that the next year should be focused on setting the table for this national narrative. I think about 12 months from now, when we’re about a year out from the presidential, I think our nominee will just bubble up to the surface. if we’re talking about the issues that people care about, then it will be up to the nominee to look to the grassroots.”
A year? That goes all the way to just before the Iowa caucus. Does she really think she could have that much time, she was asked? “Oh, I do.”
So there you have it. Bachmann says she could have the next 12 months to make up her mind about the presidential race — going right up to the Iowa caucus. And of course, this means that the door is open for the press to keep asking her questions for the next year.
(Note: All quotes used here are rush transcriptions, and may be subject to future editing.)