DFL Rep. Betty McCollum is taking a potential match-up with GOP Rep. Michele Bachmann seriously.
In a fundraising e-mail to supporters, McCollum complained about the DFL redistricting plan but also started laying the groundwork for what could be a contentious and expensive race.
“I don’t know what DFL Party leadership and their attorneys were thinking – they didn’t consult with me.
The congressional redistricting map submitted by the DFL to the state Supreme Court’s “Special Redistricting Panel” pits Minnesota’s two congresswomen against one another: Michele Bachmann against me.”
The DFL Party proposed a map that would pair McCollum and Bachmann in the same district. McCollum, who lives in St. Paul, currently represents a heavily Democratic district. Bachmann, from Stillwater, represents the GOP leaning 6th District.
McCollum, who was first elected to Congress in 2000, suggested a race against Bachmann will cost millions.
“I could be in for a re-election campaign that would require me to raise $4 million, $5 million, or even more to win if Rep. Bachmann is my opponent. Remember – in 2010 Bachmann spent $11.1 million to win re-election!”
It isn’t certain whether McCollum will be paired with Bachmann. A special redistricting panel will release its set of maps on Feb. 21 if Gov. Dayton and the GOP-controlled Legislature can’t agree before then. The GOP plan doesn’t pair any incumbents.
Another uncertainty is whether Bachmann runs for reelection. The 6th District Republican is currently running for president and hasn’t said whether she’ll run for Congress if she fails to win the GOP nomination. In the e-mail, McCollum characterized Bachmann as the founder of the Congressional Tea Party Caucus and a “right-wing darling.”
It isn’t the first time McCollum has gone after Bachmann. She criticized Bachmann earlier this year at a fundraiser.