The president of a group called American Majority says Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann could damage the tea party movement as her presidential campaign shifts its focus to social issues.
On his organization’s website Ned Ryun writes that Bachmann threatens to drive support away from the tea party.
“It is clear that the [Bachmann] campaign has become less about reform and more about her personal effort to stay relevant and sell books; a harsh commentary, but true. It’s not about tea party values or championing real plans to solve real problems. While other campaigns are diving into the substance, the supposed tea party candidate Bachmann is sticking to thin talking points and hanging on for dear life.”
The Bachmann campaign did not immediately respond to Ryun’s remarks.
UPDATE: Bachmann 2012 National Campaign Manager Keith Nahigian issued the following statement in response to Ryun’s assertions about Bachmann’s presidential campaign.
The strength of the Tea Party is all individual’s opinions are valued but the no single leader speaks for it. Mr. Ryun, who supports Texas Gov. Rick Perry, is entitled to his own opinion. And that’s exactly what he is expressing. Michele Bachmann enjoys strong support from Americans across partylines and that certainly includes the Tea Party. She will continue to be a strong advocate for the values and principles reflected by the Tea Party as works toward a victory in the first-in-the-nation Iowa caucuses as she seeks to win the Republican nomination.