We’re a little more than a month away from the Ames poll in Iowa, and Michele Bachmann has a new ad out positioning herself as a favorite son … er, daughter of Iowa. In the 30-second TV spot that will air over the next few weeks aimed at potential straw-poll voters, Bachmann hits on conservative-populist themes on opposition to bailouts, stimulus packages, and increases in the debt ceiling. It’s a call to the Tea Party:
It’s an effective ad, especially for a Tea Party base turnout. Given her rapid rise in standing in Iowa (at least in the polls), Bachmann has drawn a line in the sand on all of these issues and will force others to either declare their support for her position or to explain why they disagree. On the bailouts and stimulus, Bachmann is on rather safe ground. No one in their right political mind will propose another bailout soon, and even if Obama proposes another stimulus, Republicans will almost certainly kill it in the House, especially after the spectacular failure of Porkulus to deliver jobs or a recovery.
However, Congress is under pressure to do something about the debt ceiling before August 2nd, almost two weeks before the Ames straw poll. If the GOP agrees to raise the debt ceiling in exchange for significant structure changes in federal spending (especially entitlements), then Bachmann’s publicly-declared categorical stand against it will make her look like the fringe of her party rather than a leader, a point that will likely come up anyway as the debates between Republicans get more pointed.