You probably heard about Michele Bachmann’s “Whites of their eyes” event last week, where she urged reporters to arrive en masse at the US Capitol, to swarm the halls and glare at their congresspersons in the eyes until the blinked. Or voted against health care insurance reform. Or something.

The rally, which consisted of Bachmann and a number of other wingnuts displaying absurd theatrics and civic stupidity was technically called a press conference, and apparently members of congress can do that … they can simply go out to the public space and have even rather elaborate press conferences … without a permit. But the press was not explicitly invited to a press conference and no questions were taken at this event, and it was clearly in every way imaginable a rally.

With no permit.

Bachmann’s official congressional web site was also used to promote and manage the event. That is also a violation, as a rally is a political event. Her political campaign is not supposed to be funded by the taxpayers.

The details are here.


  1. #1 katydid13
    November 18, 2009

    Well, opening a probe against Bachman help the House Ethics Committee with their rather embarassing race problem, so it would be a win/win. For more details see

  2. #2 John
    November 18, 2009

    I’ve been to hundreds of unpermitted peaceful assemblies in public spaces. I’ve never been maced or clubbed or arrested before. Is this a new thing?

  3. #3 NH
    November 19, 2009

    What a crock. There was no funding involved and the press was there. Nice try but no cigar.

  4. #4 NH
    November 19, 2009

    This title is libelous in that it is not proven true. You’d better remove it right away before you get sued.

    Bachmann Violated Rules with Tea Party Event

  5. #5 bob
    November 19, 2009

    the internet lawyers are here

  6. #6 freelunch
    November 19, 2009


    Did you get your law degree from the same place Orly Taitz did? Clearly you haven’t mastered American rules about defamation.

  7. #7 Lorax
    November 19, 2009

    In other news: pope catholic; bear shits in woods

  8. #8 Greg Laden
    November 19, 2009

    NH: The press were not allowed to ask questions. That is the definition of a press conference. The press also shows up a train wrecks.

  9. #9 rob
    November 19, 2009

    was there actually any teabagging going on at this tea party event? if so, that could explain why they weren’t able to answer any questions for the press.

  10. #10 Rrr
    November 19, 2009

    You mean, like bagging the questions?

  11. #11 Tomato Addict
    November 19, 2009

    “You mean, like bagging the questions?”

    ***groan*** Very punny!

  12. #12 DPSisler
    November 19, 2009

    You can go here and get the story that is no longer on Politico.