Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann has dropped out of the race for the Republican presidential nomination after a poor showing in the first nominating contest in Iowa.
Announcing the end of her candidacy Wednesday, she said she will continue to be a “strong voice” and fight for the country and the “freedom” of the American people. She said she has “no regrets.”
Bachmann placed sixth in Tuesday night’s caucuses in Iowa, with just 5 percent of the vote.
Immediately after the results, Bachmann said she would stay in the race. However, by Wednesday morning it was reported she had canceled a planned trip to South Carolina. She had been scheduled to campaign there ahead of the state’s January 21 primary.
Tuesday’s New Hampshire primary is the next contest in the race, but Bachmann had planned to skip New Hampshire to focus on South Carolina.
Bachmann had a strong showing of popularity in Iowa in August, winning the Iowa straw poll, but saw her campaign suffer after Texas Governor Rick Perry entered the race. Both Bachmann and Perry sought support among those identifying themselves with the conservative Tea Party movement. The group wants to cut taxes and reduce the size of the central government.
Bachmann also faced fundraising difficulties in the last few months of her campaign and the loss of key campaign staff members.
Tea Party support
Before dropping out of the race for the Republican presidential nomination, Bachmann capitalized on support from the conservative Tea Party movement.
Bachmann helped found the Tea Party Caucus in the House of Representatives. In August, she became the first woman to win the Iowa straw poll, a non-binding early test of popularity that does not officially influence the primary elections. But her popularity was soon eclipsed by Texas Governor Rick Perry’s entry into the race.
Trained as a tax attorney, Bachmann and her husband, clinical therapist Marcus Bachmann, run a Christian counseling center in Minnesota. The couple have five children and have fostered 23 others.
On the campaign trail, the 55-year-old Bachmann, born April 6, 1956, advocated tax reform, deep cuts to government spending and repeal of the health-care reform law authored by the Obama administration. She also supports federal and state constitutional amendments that would ban same-sex marriage, and she opposes abortion.