With an insider’s eye, Hot Dish tracks the tastiest bits of Minnesota’s political scene and keep you up-to-date on those elected to serve you.

Contributors in Minnesota: Patrick Condon, Baird Helgeson, Patricia Lopez, Jim Ragsdale, Abby Simons, Rachel E. Stassen-Berger and Glen Stubbe. Contributors in D.C.: Allison Sherry, Corey Mitchell and Jim Spencer.

Posts about 6th District

Bachmann heads for England to talk at Oxford forum

Posted by: Jim Spencer Updated: March 11, 2014 - 1:01 PM

Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann will take her free market philosophy to Great Britain Friday for a speech at the Oxford Union, a debating society founded in 1823. The conservative Republican will make the case that bureaucracy thwarts innovation, her office announced Tuesday.

Bachmann will join a long list of Oxford Union presenters, including Presidents Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan and British Prime Ministers Winston Churchill and Margaret Thatcher. 

Bachmann has titled her speech "Seeds of Progress: The struggle between innovation and bureacracy." It will posit that regulators tend to control innovation and offer Bachmann's thoughts on how to develop a system that fosters growth.

“It is a high honor to be invited to speak at the Oxford Union and share ideas with some of the brightest young minds in the world," Bachmann said in a statement. "I believe that it is no coincidence that the greatest explosion of innovation in history accompanied our first experiments with political liberty and free enterprise. If we keep our societies open to innovation, we will continue to see breakthroughs that empower individuals to collaborate and transcend the bureaucracies that are thwarting progress.”

The Oxford Union is located at Oxford University, once of the world's most prestigious schools. It aims to encourage discussion of important issues and has been called by some the world's most famous debating society.   

Bachmann to speak at CPAC

Posted by: Corey Mitchell Updated: March 6, 2014 - 6:07 AM

Republican congresswoman Rep. Michele Bachmann will speak at the 2014 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in suburban Washington, D.C., this weekend.

She’ll share the stage Saturday morning with Tea Party Patriots President Jenny Beth Martin.

Bachmann’s speech at the 2013 conference drew national headlines and scrutiny from fact checkers.

In the days after her remarks, The Washington Post’s Fact Checker column awarded her eight “Pinocchios” – four for her claims about the federal food stamp programs and four more for claims about President Obama’s White House budget, which she said was filled with “perks and excess.”

Hosted by the American Conservative Union, the three-day conference showcases tea party activists, conservative opinion leaders and prospective GOP presidential candidates.

Bachmann has addressed CPAC events every year since 2010, often using the platform to criticize the Obama administration. Last year, she claimed that Obama went “AWOL” after a deadly attack on a U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya on September11, 2012.

Bachmann was one of just 15 House lawmakers to earn a 100 percent on the American Conservative Union’s recently released 2013 scorecard, a tool used to inform conservative voters about members of Congress.

Bachmann won’t be the only Minnesota lawmaker addressing the conference.

State Rep. Tara Mack, R-Apple Valley, has a midday Friday speaking slot, according to the event schedule.

As Tea Party turns five, Michele Bachmann rallies the faithful

Posted by: Corey Mitchell Updated: February 27, 2014 - 3:14 PM

Republican U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann served as an opening act as the Tea Party Patriots hosted a fifth anniversary party in Washington, D.C. on Thursday.

In a speech filled with digs at President Obama and other Democratic leaders, Bachmann drew laughter and applause from a less-than-packed ballroom at a Capitol Hill hotel this morning.

“The tea party movement at its core is an intellectual movement,” Bachmann said. “These are ideas that I would put up against any ideas in the world.”

The group hosted its first mass protest on Feb. 27, 2009, when supporters in 30 cities rallied for reductions in government spending.

Bachmann helped usher the movement onto the national stage. She founded the House Tea Party Caucus in 2010 and she gave the first tea party response to the State of the Union address in 2011. Her speech focused on the Affordable Care Act and criticism of Obama --issues that dominate the tea party's agenda to this day.

When the Republicans took over the House of Representatives in 2010, ending two years of full Democratic control of Congress and the White House, the movement’s influence was unleashed.

With budgets facing heightened scrutiny in Congress, threats of a government shutdown over spending bills finally gave way to an actual shutdown last October, spurred on by opposition to the Affordable Care Act, President Obama’s health care law.

Facing several campaign finance probes, Bachmann plans to leave Congress at the end of the year. But she urged the Tea Party rank-and-file to marshal its resources in to 2014 and 2016 to help conservatives capture control of the U.S. Senate and the White House. She pledged to join them.

“I’m making sure we elect the most conservative people we possibly can who aren’t ashamed of our beliefs, and of our constitution, and of our dedication,” Bachmann said.

“I know that we have the intellectual ballast, I know we have the fortitude and I know we have the energy to make it all happen. It’s up to us. Let’s take the challenge and get it done.”

U.S. Sens. Rand Paul of Kentucky, Ted Cruz of Texas and Mike Lee of Utah and Fox News host Sean Hannity are headlining the daylong event.

Bachmann may have drawn her most spirited crowd response when she jabbed at the Internal Revenue Service, which targeted Tea Party-affiliated groups for extra scrutiny before the 2012 election.

“I just had to let you know ahead of time that I can’t stay long because I’m being audited by the IRS,” she joked. “But you’ve been there, done that.  You know exactly what I’m talking about.”

Minnesota state Rep. Cindy Pugh, who co-founded the state's Southwest Metro Tea Party Patriots, also spoke at the celebration Thursday.

GOP U.S. Senate candidate fundraising numbers arrive

Posted by: Rachel E. Stassen-Berger Updated: February 10, 2014 - 5:01 PM

Newly available campaign finance reports highlight the fundraising disparity in Minnesota's U.S. Senate race.

According to documents on the Federal Election Commission's website on Monday, Republican candidate Julianne Ortman raised $234,000 so far for her bid to unseat Democratic U.S. Sen. Al Franken and Republican candidate Jim Abeler raised $87,000.

Franken has raised more than $12.4 million for his re-election campaign and had nearly $5 million cash on hand. Republican candidate Mike McFadden raised $2.2 million and had $1.7 million left in the bank at the start of the year. Republican candidate Chris Dahlberg raised far less.

Franken, McFadden and Dahlberg released the summary information from their reports by January 31, back when reports were due to be filed federally.

At that time, neither Ortman or Abeler released details of their fundraising reports. Because Senate candidates do not file their reports electronically, it takes a while for them to be uploaded to the FEC website. Ortman said last week that she had "nearly a quarter of a million dollars in 2013."

House candidates file their reports electronically so their fundraising information is available online when the reports are filed.

See all the fundraising information released by Minnesota's federal candidates for office below.

(scroll to see the numbers)

Federal fundraising figures, finally

Posted by: Rachel E. Stassen-Berger Updated: January 31, 2014 - 9:52 AM

Friday is Federal Election Commission deadline day when federal candidates and groups must file their fundraising figures for 2013.

Follow along as we update our chart below with the cash hauls reported the the campaign finance agency.

Note: You may need to scroll a bit to see all the numbers.

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