Thursday, March 31, 2011

Mike Huckabee Wants Every Person In America To Be Forced At Gunpoint To Listen To Every David Barton Message

In his dreams

Mike Huckabee speaking at the Rediscover God in America Conference in Iowa revealed that he holds David Barton in such high esteem that everyone in the USA should be made to watch all his messages at gunpoint.

There goes everyone's rights to freedom. I wonder if Sarah Palin has anything to say about this?

The video speaks for itself and I think that the more often that this video is posted the less Huckabee's chances for running will be. Please twitter the youtube link.

He's toast! Blueberrytart has this to say after watching the video.

Sick, sick, sick. I'm sure it appeals to the RWNJs, but most Americans would be appalled by that statement, even moreso after Tucson. I think if his fate wasn't sealed already, this should do the trick.

According to sourcewatch, Dave Barton, the man that Huckabee admires so much, has been hired by the RNC as a political consultant on numerous occassions. Barton believes that the idea that church and state should be separated is a myth and that pastors should be free to endorse politicians from the pulpit. A belief that he had to walk back when it was made apparent to him that he was encouraging pastors to put at risk their churches tax status.

Here is a typical David Barton message -- be careful how you vote or you will have to answer to God.

We're to seek righteousness first, and dozens of Bible passages affirm that a nation's righteousness is determined by its public policies, by how well those policies conform to God's standards. We love to sing "God Bless America," but if we really want God to bless America, we've got to give him something to work with.

For Christians, voting is not a right, it's a duty. It's a stewardship that we owe to God and it's a stewardship for which we'll answer directly to him. One day we'll stand before him and he'll say "what did you do with that vote I gave you?" And we'll have to answer.

Righteousness must be the issue. It must be the measure to define what we're for politically and what we're against. And each of us will answer to God not only for whether we voted, but for how we voted, for what issues drove our vote.

If we stand before God and He says "why did you vote for a leader who's attempting to redefine my institution of marriage and who wills the unborn children that I knew before they were in the womb?" If He asks us that and our answer is "Because that leader was good on jobs and the economy," He's not going to accept that.

Hat tip to Davedownunder for the link to the alternet article

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Sarah Palin To Make A Big Announcement On The Bob And Mark Show On April Fools Day? Competition Time!

By Kathleen

Image posted on Democratic National Committee website

According to many celebrity websites, and The Washington Post, on the 1st of April 2011 Sarah Palin will appear on the Bob and Mark Show to make a "major announcement." Hollywood Life has revealed that a source from the radio station told them:

“Looks like Palin might be on this Friday at 7:30 a.m. Working out details now, but right now it’s about 99% locked in. Gonna be a BIG ANNOUNCEMENT!” (emphasis mine)

Oh golly gee! Can this possibly be the moment that we have all been anticipating with dry dread? Will our fears be made manifest? On April Fool's Day of all days? And on a Friday? I don't think so.

Friday is better known in media circles as the Friday news dump day when bad news is released in order to avoid media coverage. I doubt that attention seeking Sarah would announce her intention to run on a Friday of all days. She may not even appear as this just might be Bob and Mark's idea of a fun April Fools Day prank on an anxious nation.

However if she does appear what could her "BIG ANNOUNCEMENT" possibly be? I have my own theories but will leave the suggestions up to the Politicalgates readers. It's much more fun that way and it is a long time since we had a competition.

Email me, with your suggestions or leave them in the comments if you like. The suggestion closest to Palins announcement (if there is one!) will receive something small and engaging from Patrick and I.

Competition finishes Thursday, 9 pm Eastern Standard Time. Good Luck everyone!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Weekly Roundup, March 21-27, 2011

By Blueberry Tart

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

AK State Rep. Carl Gatto Proposes Union-Busting Legislation

It was just a matter of time before the Republicans’ union-busting legislation would be on the docket in Alaska, but it is most interesting to see who has proposed it: Representative Carl Gatto of Palmer, one of Sarah Palin’s closest cronies. The bill, like others drafted by ALEC, would strip public employee unions of the right to bargain collectively (exempting certain public safety unions). This is again proposed under the guise of supposedly necessary cost-cutting, ignoring the fact of Alaska’s budget surplus and the high price of oil, which is the main source of funding for the state budget. In the update, TruGal linked to a video on the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire; the lives lost in the fire and many other factory, mining and other industrial accidents, were the catalysts for labor reforms that were hard-won and are now under siege in AK and throughout the country. MrsTBB wrote more on this topic later in the week.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

AK Congressman Don Young’s Association with Militiaman Cox

Kathleen writes about Don Young’s belated attempts to distance himself from Francis Schaeffer Cox, the AK militia member who was recently charged with plotting to kill a federal judge and several state troopers, and who has a history of violent and abusive treatment. Obviously, after Tucson, such plots have to be taken even more seriously than before. The post highlights Congressman Young’s apparently treasonous act, in which he is shown in Cox’s presence signing the Second Amendment Task Force declaration drafted by Cox, calling for outright violent rebellion against any government that might enact further gun controls. Yet Young now denies any affiliation with Cox. The post also points out the Oath that Congressman Young swore as a U.S. Congressman. Some are questioning which it is – does Young swear to uphold the U.S. Constitution and our government, or does he swear to violently oppose it? Which is it, Congressman Young?

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Bachmann Sets Up Exploratory Committee for Presidential Run

I had a hard time even typing that headline! Michele Bachmann, another pageant-walking, Bible-thumping, Tea-bagging, lie-spewing Republican women whack job, is taking steps to run for the Presidency. Her idiocy and violent rhetoric mimic Palin’s, and she is another “Tea Party darling” who never let a fact get in the way of a good sound-bitten lie. Does she have a chance at the nomination? Doubtful, but she could possibly take the VP slot if the Repubs have to appease the far right-wing. Here we go again. Gag me with a spoon.

Friday, March 25, 2011

The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory File Centennial

It is a real treat to have a guest post from Mrs. Tarquin Biscuitbarrel, albeit one on such a sobering topic as the centennial of a horrific fire that took the lives of 146 factory workers, most of them girls and young women. Despite the obvious safety violations (including having locked exit doors), no one was held liable for all those deaths, and the families received a paltry $75 compensation for the loss of their loved ones. But the public outrage led to regulations to improve worker safety and helped build unions like the International Ladies Garment Workers Union. The unions were instrumental in winning incremental improvements in wages, hours, working conditions and safety regulations that, eventually, allowed workers to earn a living wage and helped build the middle class. These gains were, until recently, largely taken for granted in this country; now they are under siege by the Republicans in many state houses. PoliticalGates salutes the legacy of those who perished that day and thanks MrsTBB for beautifully retelling this story.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

How does Sarah Palin express her condolences? Facebook and Twitter, of course!

Sarah Palin once again turned to Facebook and Twitter to express her condolences at the passing of Geraldine Ferraro, the first woman VP candidate on a major party ticket. I know this is the way Palin rolls, but it certainly gives the impression that this is more about calling attention to herself than about expressing condolences to Ferraro’s friends and family. Ferraro was a unique blend of smarts and candor who earned her distinctive place in American history. One of the things that is MOST different about Palin and Ferraro is that Ferraro could really think on her feet and was unafraid of, and in fact relished interviews, where her keen intellect and sharp wit were both on display. Palin, not so much.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Meet the Bachmanns

Nomadic Joe introduces us to the Bachmanns and explores their educational background. Michele and Marcus Bachmann share extreme religious views that know no boundaries between religion, education and government. Michele Bachmann’s law degree is from an affiliate of Oral Roberts University; enough said. Her husband’s masters degree in education/counseling is from Regent University (that of the law school which took over a key role in the Justice Dept. back in the dark days of the Bush Administration). Five of its psych department staff resigned in 2007 due to the “culture of intimidation” at the school. His “doctorate” in clinical psychology is from a school that is not accredited to grant doctoral degrees in the sciences. His clinic practices “de-gaying” and other proselytizing in the guise of therapy. Even more appalling is the fact that his clinic is supported by taxpayer dollars.

I tip my hat to Kathleen for an amazingly productive week with so many excellent posts!

Some Comments and Links:

Annes_123 observed: Charm and smiles works initially - we are human.. first impression.. we give people the benefit of the doubt...but we are not idiots.

Sunnyjane: Sarah Palin’s creed is greed, her faith is fraudulent, her intellect is grossly inadequate, and her life is a lie. She deserves nothing more than our disdain and our ridicule, and that’s all she’ll ever get from me. Later: The GOP is first in war, first in lying, and first in screwing their countrymen.

Cheeriogirl found this: catawu TAX CUTS: We all live in the house. The bills are run up, & the Rich no longer pay their share of rent/utilities nor do they do chores.

Lilly-lily: Saw one comment. "If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with Bullshit."

TruGal: Donald Trump's ego, if it were electricity, could power the world. This braggart, on "The View" right now, is stoking the birther flames, and I wish he'd shut his big fat mouth up. Barbara Walters asked him if he runs for President, would he name Palin as his VP candidate. He dodged that question, but could you see those two egos clashing over WHO would be the top of the ticket?? Hysterical.

ProChoiceGrandma: "My feminist heart weeps." Kathleen, in four words, you have described our frustration and exasperation that these incompetent dumbass skirts are lauded as potential candidates for the Presidency! Any credibility that women have attained in the past 50 years has suffered a blow that will take another 50 years to overcome.

TurtleTears: my feminist heart also weeps. Especially in light of so much anti-feminist legislation presently being passed or considered. I find it personally offensive that women with a national presence in politics would seek to nullify the work of the women who came before them to make their rise to power possible. They compound the insult by seeking to co-opt the feminist label as well, calling themselves feminists, all the while working at making women's lives more difficult.

Maelewis: It is no coincidence that where there is a newly elected Republican governor and a state house full of Republicans, they are working to dismantle voting rights, the rights of workers, the educational system and whatever else they can get their hands on. Someone once suggested that Sarah Palin was the distraction that kept us busy last year, so we wouldn't notice the real campaign under way. American is under attack, but the real terrorists are the far right wing of the Republican Party. They are stealing our country, and privatizing it for their own enrichment.

Iwantthetruth: Thanks, Mrs TBB, that was a subject I wanted to know more about. And thanks for wincing on behalf of my state. "The struggle of people against power," wrote Milan Kundera, " is the struggle of memory against forgetting." Your article aids the side of Memory!

Bandit Basheert: I am hoping and believing that when the pendulum swings back, and the Corporatist bought-and-paid-for Congressional idiots are sent packing, that the backlash that hits these individuals will last for the next 50 years! The Walker in WI story is reverberating with people, everyday people who work for a living. People are waking up and now believing and seeing that WE the PEOPLE are effectively the ENEMY… [And later] Just be yourselves / kind, thoughtful, loving, smart and caring. Do what you can to help people, even just in your own family. It will change our country. I have seen it in my lifetime....

Aview999 and others linked to this excellent piece by Sarah Jones. (Aview, come back!)

dusty17 pointed out an insightful article by Malia Litman and later found this on politicususa.

Older_Wiser2 asked: Did Twitler violate the Logan Act?

CaliGirl22 found this excellent site on corporations that don’t pay taxes.

Hope for America linked to Keith Olbermann on the hire-the-mistress scandal in Wisconsin.

ProChoiceGrandma linked to “Who Is America's Worst Governor?”

Cheeriogirl linked to a brilliant “open letter to conservatives” on TPM.

Juicyfruityy found that the Republicans’ assault on public sector workers’ pensions has a new twist, with the filing of this federal legislation.

Honestyingov linked to PolitiFact on the lies about Health Care Reform.

Zane1: Bachmann Copies Qaddfis Talking Points & Makes Serious Foreign Policy Blunder.

77TA66/Floyd Orr linked to a new progressive site.

I am also going to repost the link to this blogpost on ALEC by William Cronon (the UWisconsin professor under attack by Walker's cronies), in case you missed it -- it is excellent.

Okay, I couldn’t resist a couple of good tweets:

DC Debbie by ParadigmShiftII Imagine a Trump/Palin 2012 GOP ticket! He'd try to fire her but she would've already quit.

Azure Ghost: Seems everything @SarahPalinUSA says consists of cheesy one-liners, a bunch of sour grapes, and an abundance of whine

The Last Word (with H/T to Annes_123): "I call upon you to draw from the depths of your being — to prove that we are a human race, to prove that our love outweighs our need to hate, that our compassion is more compelling than our need to blame." ~ Elizabeth Taylor

Monday, March 28, 2011

Rolling Stone Graphic Photos and Videos from Afghanistan - Jeremy Morlock and the "Kill Team"

By Kathleen

Rolling Stone have today published a number of unedited, graphic photographs most of which were taken directly after the controversial killings of innocent civilians in Afghanistan. They also released two videos which have been passed around from soldier to soldier.

Warning -- the photos and videos in the links above are the most graphic images that I have seen coming out of a war zone in years, but it is my view that they should be seen by as many people as possible who have the stomach to do so. They are more than likely not safe for viewing at work. My heart aches after viewing them -- the images are quite simply unforgettable.

For some time now military officials have gone to extreme lengths to keep the photos and several videos from being published as they believe that their release would spark off a controversy as large as Abu Grahib. Many people question the release of the photos and videos because they claim that they will put soldiers on the ground in Afghanistan and other countries at risk. I think that the bigger questions are why are these terrible events still taking place and why is it that no one in authority is ever held accountable? After all this is the military -- they operate on a hierarchical structure with a chain of command and it is obvious from their own reports that a number of those in charge suspected that the deaths were questionable. Are they not, at the very least, derelict in carrying out their duties? Could lives have been saved if they acted sooner?

From the start, the questionable nature of the killings was on the radar of senior Army leadership. Within days of the first murder,Rolling Stone has learned, Mudin's uncle descended on the gates of FOB Ramrod, along with 20 villagers from La Mohammad Kalay, to demand an investigation. "They were sitting at our front door," recalls Lt. Col. David Abrahams, the battalion's second in command.

Other officers were also in a position to question the murders. Neither 3rd Platoon's commander, Capt. Matthew Quiggle, nor 1st Lt. Roman Ligsay has been held accountable for their unit's actions, despite their repeated failure to report killings that they had ample reason to regard as suspicious. In fact, supervising the murderous platoon, or even having knowledge of the crimes, seems to have been no impediment to career advancement. Ligsay has actually been promoted to captain, and a sergeant who joined the platoon in April became a team leader even though he "found out about the murders from the beginning," according to a soldier who cooperated with the Army investigation.

The details in the Rolling Stone report are also disturbing. It is clear from testimonies and gathered intelligence that the killings were carried out on either young or older victims. In all cases they were vulnerable and which civilian wouldn't be when faced with soldiers armed with machine guns and M4 carbine assault rifles? Those civilians were chosen as easy targets. Rolling Stone also assert that the killings were out in the open and that they were not clandestine as has been suggested by the Pentagon.

Far from being clandestine, as the Pentagon has implied, the murders of civilians were common knowledge among the unit and understood to be illegal by "pretty much the whole platoon," according to one soldier who complained about them. Staged killings were an open topic of conversation, and at least one soldier from another battalion in the 3,800-man Stryker Brigade participated in attacks on unarmed civilians. "The platoon has a reputation," a whistle-blower named Pfc. Justin Stoner told the Army Criminal Investigation Command. "They have had a lot of practice staging killings and getting away with it."

The article also questions the background of Jeremy Morlock, who was sentenced to 24 years last week for his part in the killings. It reveals the fact that there were several violent incidents in his youth and that he assaulted his young wife. The implication is that he might never have been accepted by the army if it wasn't for the fact that the military was short of troops. It also mentions the Morlock family connection to the Palin family and his drug abuse.

Before the military found itself short of troops in Afghanistan and Iraq, Morlock was the kind of bad-news kid whom the Army might have passed on. He grew up not far from Sarah Palin in Wasilla, Alaska; his sister hung out with Bristol, and Morlock played hockey against Track. In those days, he was constantly in trouble: getting drunk and into fights, driving without a license, leaving the scene of a serious car accident. Even after he joined the Army, Morlock continued to get into trouble. In 2009, a month before he deployed to Afghanistan, he was charged with disorderly conduct after burning his wife with a cigarette. After he arrived in Afghanistan, he did any drug he could get his hands on: opium, hash, Ambien, amitriptyline, flexeril, phenergan, codeine, trazodone

Jeremy Morlocks mother, Audrey Morlock, believes that her son has been unfairly treated by the military -- that those in charge should have intervened and also that her son was merely following orders. As I wrote earlier I too think that intervention may have saved some lives but I do not accept that Morlock was ordered to take part in the killing of Afghan civilians. He and his co-accused made those decisions on their own and Morlock admitted it in his own testimony.

I hope that Ms Morlock takes a good long hard look at the above photos of her son's victims. Especially the fifteen year old boy who trusted that he would be in the safe hands of his American liberators moments before his unnecessary and heart rendering death at their hands. Jeremy Morlock chose his course and now he has to pay. I hope that in this case 24 years will mean 24 years and that he will not be released earlier.


Please read this interview with Geoffrey Dunn about his new book, The Lies of Sarah Palin, which will be released at the beginning of May. You can pre-order it here.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Meet the Bachmanns

By Nomadic Joe

Recently PoliticalGates decided to throw the spotlight on Michelle Bachmann who has declared her intention to run for president in 2012. I just wanted to take a moment to take a closer look at the woman, the couple and the man behind the woman.


According to her biography, Bachmann was born Michele Marie Amble in Waterloo, Iowa, to a Lutheran Norwegian American family who moved from Iowa to Minnesota when she was young.

After her parents divorced, Bachmann's father, David John Amble, moved to California, and Bachmann was raised by her mother, Jean, who worked at the First National Bank in Anoka, Minnesota. Bachmann grew up in Anoka, graduating from Anoka High School in 1974.

.At Winona State University Michele Amble met her husband, Marcus, a fellow

college student and dairy farmer. They began dating in 1976 while working together on Jimmy Carter's presidential campaign. Presumably, they were both attracted to the candidate because of Carter's born-again status. However, as Bachmann would later explain, she grew disenchanted with Carter’s liberal approach to public policy, which included legalized abortion. After graduation in 1978, the couple married and moved to Tulsa, Oklahoma. After moving to Tulsa, Michele Bachmann enrolled at the Bible-based Coburn School of Law, an affiliate of Oral Roberts University.

A little more about Coburn School of Law

As the book, Oral Roberts: An American life, by David Edwin Harrell relates, the donation to Oral Roberts University that funded the creation of the Coburn law school was made by O.W. Coburn, the father of current Oklahoma Republican Senator Tom Coburn. The law school's founding dean, Charles A. Kothe, (later a labor consultant for the Reagan Administration) outlined the university's mission:

Our first goal at the O.W. Coburn School of law is to equip our students with the ability to bring God's healing power to reconcile individuals and to restore community wholeness. That goal requires student not only to become technically competent lawyer with high ethical value but to learn how to integrate their Christian faith into their chosen profession.. Our second goal is to restore law to its historic roots in the Bible."

The stated purpose and student selection guidelines led to a long and bitter accreditation fight with the ABA. This accreditation struggle would begin innocently enough in 1978, when the university was given authorization to begin the school by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. However, obtaining approval by the ABA would prove more of a challenge.

This application was made to the association in September 1980. Although the school was given high marks for its financial backing and academic programs, questions arose about its stated purpose. In spring of 1981, administrators appeared before the American Bar Association's Committee of Admissions. At this meeting, the first question asked to the Law school's directors was, "If one of the male members of your faculty wanted to marry another of the male members of your faculty, what would you do?" The officials from the school were flabbergasted. Finally, they answered, "Why, I'd fire him."

Later, in a second meeting, the battle with the ABA would escalate. The primary issue was the school's requirement that all attending students sign a code of honor, affirming a belief that Jesus was their Lord and Savior.

After a court ruling in its favor, the matter was brought before the House of Delegates in the American Bar Association and, after a heated debate, the vote to give accreditation passed by a slim margin.

More about Marcus


Michele and Marcus live in Stillwater, Minnesota and have five children, Lucas, Harrison, Elisa, Caroline, and Sophia.

The husband of the Congresswoman from the sixth district has been a clinical therapist in the Twin Cities area for more than 18 years. Additionally, Marcus is a popular conference speaker with practical insights, biblical principles, and humor interwoven in his messages. It should surprise nobody that his politics are based in a decidedly conservative nature.

Now, let's turn Dr. Marcus Bachmann's educational background. His website states that he has a master’s degree education/counseling from Regent University in Virginia Beach, Virginia.

Regent University is a private Christian university, founded by the American televangelist Pat Robertson in 1978 as Christian Broadcasting Network University. (This is, by the way, the man who recently claimed that Haiti's founders had sworn a "pact to the Devil" in order to liberate themselves from the French slave owners and indirectly attributed the earthquake to the consequences of the Haitian people being "cursed" for doing so. And this is also the man who blamed the September 11th 2001 attacks on “the ACLU, the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays, and the lesbians”)

Apart from the silliness that its founder has created, Regent University, in its recent history, has had its own share of controversies and set-backs. In June, 2007, five of the eleven full time faculty members of School of Psychology & Counseling's master's counseling program resigned.

An article in The Virginia-Pilot provides an peek into the atmosphere of the school,

One professor said that there is a "climate of fear and intimidation” within the school. Another said, “The climate is contrary to Christian values rather than embracing them.” While a third said, “I cannot in good conscience continue to participate in this unhealthy and toxic environment.” A petition was circulated which criticized the behavior of the school's dean and the counseling department's program director said to have used the terms "brothas”, “hoes” and “homos”, though some students said the words were used in an "academic context".

Shortly after this article was printed, Robertson announced that he was considering purchasing the daily newspaper but later decided against it.

Marcus Bachmann received his Ph.D degree in clinical psychology from Union Graduate Institute located in Cincinnati, Ohio. Union Institute, a non-profit private college based in Cincinnati, Ohio, specializes in limited residence and distance learning programs. Union Institute & University currently has a retention rate of approximately 67% and holds a graduation rate of approximately 52%.

Union Institute has received a number of complaints in recent years, claiming that credits obtained from the university's doctorate program are essentially "worthless." One complainant writes, "Back in 2004, I was sent an email by the President of Union Institute and University, Roger Sublett, that stated that UI&U had been censured by the United States Department of Education. All of the doctoral students received that email... " (One assumes that Marcus Bachmann must be aware of the problems.)

According to the Ohio Board of Regents Reauthorization report, which was particularly critical of the Ph.D program " ... expectations for student scholarship at the doctoral level were not as rigorous as is common for doctoral work ... "

Furthermore, there remains a question about the degree itself. Wikipedia attempts to shed some light on the definition of a Ph.D according to this institution.

"One thing that distinguishes the Union Institute and University from its for-profit competitors is the the generalist nature of its Ph.D. The formal title of its Ph.D. degree is "Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Studies." This title and the program reflect the original idea of the consortium of offering a non-residential Ph.D. program that avoided specialization and did not take as long to complete as a traditional program (originally it took a minimum of two years to complete)."

Given the problems with the Ph.D degree issued by Union and questions regarding the institution's accreditation, it is quite conceivable that the Bachmann's credentials are invalid altogether.“ This would also raise some questions about the clinic’s ability to meet the Minnesota requirements for licensing.

As another graduate of Union Institute, talk show host Gary Null, notes, "This school is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools but its accreditation does not cover awarding of PhDs in the sciences, only in the humanities. "

In any case, since nothing on either of the Bachmann's resume mention residing in Cincinnati, where Union Institute is located, one must, at the very least, assume his degree is a distance-learning or online type and not one normally associates with a medical doctor.

The Man and His Work

In a 2003 Christmas letter to all her fans and friends, Michele announced the exciting news that her husband had just opened "Bachmann & Associates Christian Counseling Center," "Conveniently located, Marcus and his professional staff are poised to care for those you've always wanted to make an appointment for," the letter cheerfully notes.

Bachmann and Associates, founded and owned Marcus Bachmann, offers counseling on a wide array of specialties, such as addictions to marital problems, depression, eating disorders, and men's and women's issues. The website also lists children, shame and spiritual issues.

However, last year, Americans United for Separation of Church and State, a watchdog group, launched an investigation of Bachmann and Associates for a misuse of taxpayer funds. The Minnesotan Independent first reported that Bachmann’s clinic received nearly $30,000 in state funds since 2007. That, in itself, is strikingly hypocritical, given the very public stance of Michele Bachmann who became famous for infammatory rhetoric opposing government “handouts.” Regarding Obama's health care reform, Bachmann told audiences “We saw the passage of socialized medicine.”

Jim Duffett of the Campaign for Better Health Care called Bachmann’s words and actions hypocritical. “Yes, she is taking money from government programs, which she calls ‘socialism,’ and at the same time taking taxpayers money to help cover the clinic’s health care costs,” he said. Her family business is taking in taxpayer money, he said, “and at the same time demanding that taxes be cut.”

“Rep. Bachmann’s opposition to public health coverage seems quite selective,” added Ron Pollack, executive director of Families USA, a health care consumers group. “When it helps her pocketbook she is for it. When it enables working families to meet affordable health coverage, she’s against it.”

However, a greater problem lies in the fact that Bachmann and Associates, Inc, while taking government funding, openly advertises itself as a religion-based counseling center.

One glance at the clinic's website confirms that much.
Marcus Bachmann's personal mission statement:

I believe my call is to minister to the needs of people in a practical, effective, and sensitive way. Christ is the Almighty Counselor.

While there are one or two counselors who do not mention religion or Christianity in their resumes, here are a few of the other personal mission statements from the Lake Elmo clinic:

Kathryn Kimball, NILD Educational Therapist, Level III
I want to provide Christ-centered Educational Therapy in a caring, professional way that addresses the underlying causes of learning disabilities.

Tim Johnson, Clinic Director, Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist
It is my responsibility through the power of the Holy Spirit to address presenting needs with all the Grace the Lord has offered me.

In the Burnsvilles Clinic- listed on the website as part of Bachmann and Associates, all of the counselors' mission statements make some reference to religion and only one religion.

Brent Baumler, Burnsville Clinic Director, Clinical Therapist
It is my mission to provide Christ-centered, Bible-based counseling to those hurting from the trials and troubles of this world.

Ronda LaPointe, Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker
To show Christ’s love and grace, while building a compassionate and caring partnership. Through respect, sincere interest, and in depth listening, I help individuals navigate through the issues that cause them difficulties; and, together we work to find suitable means to reach balance and fulfillment in their life.

Shelia J. Marker, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
To come along side of those who are struggling to offer hope and encouragement that they can find healing and wholeness in their lives with therapy that is psychologically sound as well as consistent with Biblical principles.

Gene Martens, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist
Living requires constant adjustment to life changes. I find it a humble honor to walk with individuals as they discover ways to live fulfilling lives discovering God’s grace in Christ.

Kristi Wilder, Clinical Therapist
My desire is to be an instrument of hope, encouragement, and guidance to others on their path to emotional and spiritual healing. I want to walk along side you and your family, with God’s grace and guidance, as you work toward positive change and growth.

The Minnesota Independent article also quotes Dr. Bachmann's radio interview.

“We are distinctly a Christian counseling agency here in the Twin Cities,”he told KKMS radio in 2008. “We have 27 Christian counselors, Christ-centered, very strong in our understanding of who the Almighty Counselor is, and as we rely on God’s word and the Almighty Counselor, we have the opportunity to change people’s lives.

According to the article,

The clinic applied for and received Rule 29 and Rule 31 licensing from the state in 2003. The rules allow the clinic to receive state money to treat low-income Minnesotans for mental health and chemical dependency problems. The clinic has earned $27,564 in state payments since 2007 — and likely received more, since the Minnesota Transparency and Accountability Project’s online data only goes back to 2007. Bachmann and Associates took $1,419 in public money in 2007, $13,140 in 2008, $12,493 in 2009 and $512 so far in 2010, according to the transparency project.

Senior Litigation Counsel for Americans United for Seperation of Church and State, Alex J. Luchenitser told the online publication that there are some serious constitutional issues with the Bachmann’s clinic using taxpayer funds to proselytize or push a particular faith.

“It’s wrong for the government to buy clinical services that include submission to God or proselytization,” he said. “This appears to be a textbook case of taxpayers’ funds for religious purposes.” Luchenitser added that it would be even more problematic if the Bachmanns only hired Christian employees while taking government funding.

“That would be religious discrimination,” he said.

Straightening out the Barbarians

Other critics have charged that the clinic engages in "de-gaying" or "reparative therapy." In other words, treatment aimed at making homosexual patients into heterosexual patients.

The Independent article also states that Dr. Bachmann has told newspapers that he doesn't encourage gays to become straight, but he has spoken about the issue at length on Christian radio.

He told Point of View Talk Radio that if a child confides in a parent that they might be gay, that parent should discourage the child from being gay. He also said because of public schools, the number of homosexuals in America is increasing.

We have to understand that barbarians need to be educated, need to be disciplined,” Bachmann said. “And just because someone thinks [they're gay] or feels it doesn’t mean we need to go down that road. That’s what is called the sinful nature.”

“We have a responsibility as parents and authority figures not to allow such feelings to move into action steps” such as homosexual relationships, he said. “What is our public school system doing today? They are giving full wide open doors to children not only encouragement to think it, but to encourage actions steps.”

He concluded, “The percentage of homosexuals in this country is small but by these open doors we can see it is starting to increase.”

For his part, Dr. Bachmann denies that the clinic is involved in such therapy. When asked about the accusation, he merely says, "That's a false statement," Yet Bachmann offers, "If someone is interested in talking to us about their homosexuality, we are open to talking about that. But if someone comes in a homosexual and they want to stay homosexual, I don't have a problem with that." (It seems quite impossible to match this to the statements made on talk radio, cited above.)

Public statements aside, what is said to the flock also seem to cast doubt on Bachmann's denials and claims of open mindedness. For example, in November of 2005, when the Bachmanns attended a "Minnesota Pastors' Summit" organized by the conservative, antigay Minnesota Family Council at Grace Church in Eden Prairie, around 300 religious leaders attended the event,. Leading a session on the gay marriage amendment was Michele while Marcus offered a presentation titled "The Truth About the Homosexual Agenda."

City Papers had this insider report on the event:

Curt Prins, a 35-year-old marketing executive from Minneapolis, attended. Prins, who is gay, says he went because he was "curious" and wanted to "understand the language" of the antigay movement. "There was so much bile, I nearly had to leave," Prins recalls.

For Marcus Bachmann's session, Prins says there were more than 100 people crammed in a room at Grace, and most of the presentation involved stereotypes of gays. "He was saying how homosexuality was a choice, that it was not genetics," Prins says. "He was claiming there was a high predominance of sexual abuse in the GLBT community. There was no research to back any of this up." (Marcus Bachmann refused to answer questions about the seminar.)

The climax of the presentation was when, according to Prins, Bachmann brought up "three ex-gays, like part of a PowerPoint presentation." The trio, two white men and a black woman, all testified that they had renounced their homosexuality. "One of them said, 'If I was born gay, then I'll have to be born again,'" Prins recalls. "The crowd went crazy."

"Listening to him," Prins surmises, "it becomes clear that he's had a huge impact on her. He might be the spearhead of this whole religious/gay issue." Shortly after Bachmann announced her candidacy for U.S. Congress, there was an announcement on a website called the Minnesota Christian Chronicle. "Michele is a compassionate, intelligent woman of integrity who has a calling in her life. I am confident in Michele's ability to serve the constituents superbly well in the Sixth District," Marcus Bachmann was quoted as saying. "As her husband, I fully endorse Michele running for U.S. Congress. I am so thankful for her Christian testimony. She is a servant who honors Christ."

So, there you have it. The first Republican candidate to announce her intention to run for the highest position in the United States government, this servant of Christ, Michele Bachmann, and her confessed strategist/ accomplice, Dr. Marcus.