U.S. Rep. John Kline and former U.S. Sen. Norm Coleman on Friday added their voices to the chorus of Republicans who have questioned Republican U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann's quest to investigate a state department employee.
"I don’t think any of us doubt that Mrs. Bachmann is concerned about national security and she was reaching out to do something about that. I think she stepped a bit over the line when she went after individuals by name. We need to be focusing on jobs and the economy and the things that Norm and I have been talking about and the things that Gov. Romney has been talking about and get this economy turned around and get Americans back to work," Kline, who represents Minnesota's Second Congressional District, said when asked about Bachmann during a RNC conference call about the economy.
Coleman, who represented Minnesota in the U.S. Senate until 2008, said he shared Kline's view.
"I have no doubt that Congresswoman Bachmann is deeply concerned about national security and that’s what motivated her, that’s what motivates her. I also worked with Huma (Abedin, the State Department aide who Bachmann specifically said should be investigated) when I was in the Senate and so have deep concerns when individuals are singled out like that. There’s a better way to deal with those issues and again, the focus should be on the economy and should be about jobs. Having worked with somebody who is kind of the object of this certainly have concern. I think her motivations I think they are deep concerns about this country but there’s a better way to deal with that," Coleman said.
Bachmann has been under pressure for weeks after requesting, in letters she and other Republican members of congress signed, several departments investigate whether the United State's policies had been influenced and infiltrated by the Muslim Brotherhood. In a letter to the Deputy Inspector General at the Department of State, their letter specifically suggested that Abedin had three family members who were connected to Muslim Brotherhood "operatives and/or organizations."
In the wake of controversy over the letters, she also made some accusations about U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison, a Minnesota Democrat and the first Muslim-American member of congress, and responded to him in a detailed letter that underscored her concerns.