Michele Bachmann Calls Mitt Romney Endorsement Rumors ‘Completely False’

Feb 1, 2012 10:29am
gty michele bachmann jef 110830 wblog Michele Bachmann Calls Mitt Romney Endorsement Rumors Completely False

(Image Credit: Richard Ellis/Getty Images)

ABC News’ Michael Falcone reports:

TAMPA, Fla. — Mitt Romney is heading to the Minneapolis area on Wednesday — the day after his decisive win in the Florida primary — and rumors had been swirling that Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann might offer up her endorsement while he’s there.

Not going to happen, according to Bachmann.

“Let me be absolutely clear — there are absolutely no negotiations between me and the Romney campaign regarding any pending endorsement of Governor Romney,” she said in a statement. “I continue to speak with all the candidates and plan on uniting behind the presumptive nominee.”

While Romney holds a grassroots rally in Eagan, Minn., Wednesday afternoon, Bachmann plans to be in Washington, DC.

A source close to the former presidential contender, who dropped out after a disappointing finish in the Iowa caucuses, backed up Bachmann’s statement that she has  ”talked to all” of the remaining four Republican candidates vying for the party’s nomination, including Romney.

In fact, the pair have spoken within the last few days.

“She may or may not endorse someone,” according to the Bachmann confidante.

In her statement on Wednesday, the congresswoman called a Boston Globe story speculating about an endorsement “completely false.” The story also raised the possibility that if she endorsed Romney, the former Massachusetts governor might help her  ”pay off her lingering campaign debt.”

“I call on the Globe to retract their article,” Bachmann said. (Her fourth quarter campaign finance report showed her in the hole more than $1 million.)

Whether or not an endorsement is coming anytime soon — or at all — there is some evidence to suggest closer ties between the two camps.

Romney recently brought aboard former Bachmann strategist, Brett O’Donnell, as a debate coach. O’Donnell assisted Romney with preparation for both of last week’s debates in Florida. At least one member of Bachmann’s advance team has joined the Romney campaign.

And former Bachmann campaign manager Keith Nahigian was on hand in Tampa Tuesday night for Romney’s victory party.

Still, the Bachmann source said the Minnesota Republican is “no closer” to an endorsement now then she was the day she dropped out of the race.

In the meantime, Romney already has a prominent endorser from Minnesota — the state’s former Gov. Tim Pawlenty, another former candidate who quit the race, and who is now a regular presence on the campaign trail for Romney.

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