At 7:03 p.m., the text of Michele Bachmann's speech to the Values Voter Summit flitted into my inbox. It began:
Washington, D.C. - Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann spoke from the heart to a standing-room only crowd at the Values Voter Summit hosted by the Family Research Council in Washington D.C.
At 7:37 p.m., the speech hadn't happened yet. In Bachmann's defense, the room is pretty full.
UPDATE 8:00: Not quite standing room only, though.
Bachmann's speech is being received politely, building slowly to a finish that's being choreographed for maximum excitement -- some devout supporters being lined up on the side of the room.
8:34: I spoke a bit too soon. Bachmann's speech never caught fire and turned into a looping mess. Budgeted for 25 minutes (I noticed a countdown clock near the stage), it dragged on for 45, as Bachmann repeated her themes on the same subjects -- "Obamacare" repeal, the wisdom of John Adams -- twice. Afterwards, a small number of Bachmann fans were encouraged to wait to the side of the stage to meet the candidate, and in that line I found some enthusiams. "She touched on all the subjects she talks about," said supporter Mark Moore.
But the meet-and-greet was just as odd. Bachmann ran out quickly, shaking hands, then ran back to the loping backstage area where, the theory went, she would regroup for another meeting. Some Bachmann fans started sprinting to the VIP parking lot where they were thinking they'd see here, while some -- including William Temple, the omnipresent Tea Party Patriot -- shrugged and went back to their seats. The diehards never got to see Bachmann, being told by a staffer that they'd arrived right after she left.
TODAY IN SLATE
The Most Terrifying Thing About Ebola
The disease threatens humanity by preying on humanity.
I Bought the Huge iPhone. I’m Already Thinking of Returning It.
Scotland Is Just the Beginning. Expect More Political Earthquakes in Europe.
Students Aren’t Going to College Football Games as Much Anymore
And schools are getting worried.
Two Damn Good, Very Different Movies About Soldiers Returning From War
Lifetime Didn’t Think the Steubenville Rape Case Was Dramatic Enough
So they added a little self-immolation.
- Protesters Take to the Streets to Sound Alarm on Climate Change in New York, Across the World
- Knife-Carrying White House Jumper is Vet who Feared “Atmosphere Was Collapsing”
- North Korea: American Sentenced to Hard Labor Wanted to Become “Second Snowden”
- Almost One in Four Americans Support Idea of Splitting From the Union