WEST DES MOINES, Iowa -- To my regret, I missed this announcement Michele Bachmann, noticing it only after the event had began. (The time between announcement and event was one hour.)
Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann will host the following media availability today with Iowa Congressman Steve King. EVENT: Bachmann signs Congressman Steve King's "Repeal ObamaCare Pledge"
NBC's Libby Leist made it there, and captured proof. This was how Bachmann was spending her caucus day, signing a new pledge to affirm that she pledged something that she already pledged. But I'm being naive -- this was Bachmann, who did not earn King's endorsement, getting a made-for-TV photo of herself next to King. Pay attention, western Iowa.
If Bachmann was never going to win this state, then... what was the point of the King-Bachmann alliance? King pushed his way out of obscurity in 2009 by endorsing the Tea Party, often and early. Bachmann, more controlled and (King will actually say this) more attractive, became the media's official Tea Party representative in Congress; King was the Iowa player who was going to make sure the Tea Party mattered in 2012. I don't know how they could have maintained this, or pressed their advantage. Maybe they couldn't, once Republicans actually took power in the House.