Rep. Bachmann Scholar?

Chris Wallace Asking Michele Bachmann if she is a flake. Fox News Sunday.

“I’ve worked in serious scholarship…” Rep. Michele Bachmann.

I am no fan of personal attacks on politicians. In the case of Rep. Michele Bachmann, her own words are, sadly, fulfilling the same function. During the recent Fox news interview with Chris Wallace, for which Mr. Wallace apologized for using the term “flake,” Rep. Bachmann defended herself by focusing on her age, years of her marriage, and involvement in “serious scholarship” among other items.

The latter statement got my interest. Unfortunately, there is no basis in fact for stating her involvement in “serious scholarship” – I invite any reader to challenge this by sharing her scholarly publications. As one example, I searched extensively on Google Scholar, including provision for legal opinions and journals and was not able to identify any scholarly works.

In addition, it is notable that her law degree was conferred by Oral Roberts University in 1986, the last class for their law school.


In 1986 the university “shut down its ailing law school and sent its library to Pat Robertson’s Bible-based college in Virginia”, which subsequently founded the Regent University School of Law.[20]

In all fairness, one website , Conservapedia, offers a different perspective in “Wikipedia” like format:

Bachmann is pro-life, pro-gun,[2] pro-religion and holds many other core conservative values. A search for her on Google turns up five positive sites for every 100 nasty liberal smear sites, like the Huffington Post. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has now officially put the outspoken Minnesota Republican in their sights with the bachmannwatch website.

Liberals have been hysterical about some of the candid observations of Congresswoman Bachmann. She was targeted for comments made seeking an investigation into the Obama-Ayers connection, the “tolerant” liberal establishment even compared her to the Nazis.[3]

She deserves many compliments for her insight and courage. Congresswoman Rep. Bachmann, “has shown an uncanny knack for infuriating critics with sometimes off-the-wall behavior and comments, all the while advancing her own political career.” [4]

Serious scholar? No. Provocateur? Yes.


  1. #1 Adrienne Zolondick
    June 29, 2011

    Thanks for bringing truths to light.
    Sounds like she believes serious schollarship is the correct way to put her work with at risk kids maybe? I don’t know, but she sure didn’t flinch when he accused her of being a flake. Didn’t show any emotion at all. Is that what they teach you in the school of how to become a rising politician?

  2. #2 Jeff
    June 29, 2011

    Thank you for your comment, Adrienne. I agree with you – her interpretation of “serious scholarship” is vastly different from that of professional academics, and of course, not “flinching” in the face of personal attacks is the sign of a professional politician, whether you agree with her or not.

  3. #3 Greatbear
    June 29, 2011

    From what I’ve heard, while at Oral Roberts U, Bachmann worked as a research assistant to help one of her professors write a historically revisionist book about the founding fathers. This is apparently where she got a lot of her flaky ideas (And I give no apologies for calling a flake a flake) about the founding fathers.

    So, I guess if helping a professor write a book of fiction counts as “serious scholarship”, then she qualifies.

  4. #4 Jeff
    June 29, 2011

    Thanks. There’s an interesting discussion over at

    Some excerpts:

    Dr. Jeffrey H. Toney uses CP’s article on Michele Bachmann to prove a point. Pippa

    Evaluating Rep. Bachmann’s “Scholarship”

    Thank you for posting my article, “Rep. Bachmann Scholar?.” As an academic Dean, her reference to “serious scholarship” got my attention, as I routinely evaluate the quality of faculty scholarship as a key component of reappointment and tenure at the University. I was not able to identify any evidence of scholarship by Rep. Bachmann, and included the reference to Conservapedia as an example of a strongly biased perspective on her accomplishments. All of this information is important for any citizen considering candidates for President of the United States in 2012. — Unsigned, by: Jetoney / talk / contribs

    CP and their ilk thrive on attention (they’re not doing so well for it at the moment) so I regret that so prominent a blog as yours mentioned them. They see all comment as good (no such thing as bad publicity?) even when it lambasts them. Pippa

    Has anyone pointed out from an article or statement of hers, what she intends to mean by “scholarly”. I mean, maybe she’s comparing herself to the Alaskan nut. In which case, she might well be considered to have a virtual PhD. But I would take some “offense” with Jetoney’s suggestion that the only scholarly person must be in academics or must have written something. It is possible she is an amateur connoisseur of history, noting things that have long been missed, like forgetting one of the Adams’ as a founding father, or thinking that Paul R didn’t warn the british as well. those are historical things unknown heretofor, and perhaps some credit should be given to her, for finding those things out! (that said, great article, Jetoney.)–Sun

  5. #5 Paul Durrant
    June 29, 2011

    Anybody using Conservapedia as a source to prove a point except how idiotic Conservapedia is… is an idiot. You lost the argument.

  6. #6 Jeff
    June 29, 2011

    Unfortunately, you misread my reference to them. Name calling accomplishes nothing

  7. #7 Dr. K.
    July 2, 2011

    I suspect part of the problem lies in the fact that people like Bachmann (or Beck or Palin) actually believe they ARE serious scholars, simply because they are so poorly exposed to actual scholarship that they don’t know any better. It’s almost childlike, and might be cute if so many of their supporters didn’t know any better either.

New comments have been disabled.