Pathological liar Bachmann forces AP to impose 'fact check' quota
Do you think you had it rough trying to make sense of the countless quips spewed from the mouth of Rep. Michele Bachmann on the campaign trail? The AP had to implement a Bachmann-specific standard for fact checking during her presidential run.
Speaking before members of the National Press Club this week, Associated Press Editor Jim Drinkard told fellow reporters that when it comes to getting to the truth, some subjects require a little bit of extra scrutiny. Take Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minnesota), for example, whose failed attempt at securing the GOP’s nomination for presidency last year was highlighted by a hilarious collection of factually inaccurate gaffes and goofs.For the AP, though, her rampant and ridiculous outbursts weren’t exactly fun and games.“We had to have a self-imposed Michele Bachmann quota in some of those debates,” Drinkard told attendees at his address. AP articles involving the congresswoman had to be repeatedly vetted for accuracy, Drinkard added, causing an “overload” at times when she was involved in select stories.“Often she was just more prone to statements that just didn’t add up,” Drinkard added.Until she resigned from the Republican Party race, Bachmann was notorious on the campaign trail for touting imaginary facts and erring on seemingly everything under the sun. Despite these mistakes, however, she still managed to be an early favorite among GOP voters, placing first in the Ames Straw Poll in Iowa in August 2011. Over the course of only a few months, however, that support waned as, coincidentally, the congresswoman increasingly ad-libbed during presidential debates and dropped countless incorrect statements to the media.At the height of her popularity last summer, Rep. Bachmann warned that “the rise of the Soviet Union” posed a very real threat to a United States in the midst of America’s “unstoppable decline.” Weeks later, she suggested that Cuba was in cahoots with terrorists aligned with Hezbollah and that violent extremists “could have training camps or perhaps have missile sites or weapons sites in Cuba,” without ever introducing any evidence.In December, the then-candidate’s publicist had to put out a press release after she once again erred on America’s foreign policy, advocating that she would close down the US embassy in Iran if president — more than 20 years after it had already been done.“Congresswoman Bachmann is a member of the House Select Committee on Intelligence and is fully aware that we do not have an embassy in Iran and have not had one since 1980,” her camp was coaxed into admitting. “She was agreeing with the actions taken by the British to secure their embassy personnel and was speaking in the hypothetical, that if she was President of the United States and if we had an embassy in Iran, she would have taken the same actions as the British.”Bachmann formally ended her run for the White House in January.