ST. PAUL, Minn. – Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann announced Wednesday that her fourth term in Congress will be her last, choosing to leave on her own terms after a dismal 18 months in which her presidential bid collapsed and she barely managed to retain her House seat.
Bachmann, a leading figure in the tea party movement, discussed the decision in a Web video sent to supporters by email. She said her departure was unrelated to ethics inquiries stemming from the failed presidential run and “was not influenced by any concerns about my being re-elected.”
After eight years in Washington, Bachmann left the door open to other political options, though she didn’t say what those might be. She was traveling in Russia as part of a congressional delegation and was not available for interviews.
Without the polarizing Bachmann on the ticket, Republicans could have an easier time holding a district that leans more heavily in the GOP direction than any other in Minnesota. A parade of hopefuls was expected.