Palin 2.0? Bachmann Tells ABC News, "I'm In!"

Tea Party darling sits down for exclusive ABC News interview in Iowa

ByABC News
March 23, 2011, 2:53 PM

March 24, 2011 -- Just over ten months before next February's Iowa caucuses Sarah Palin is returning from a recent trip to Israel. But Tea Party darling Rep. Michele Bachmann is already hitting the Hawkeye state capital.

Unlike Palin, all signs point to Bachmann running for the Republican presidential nomination later this year. In an Iowa version of ABC News' "Subway Series" shot on the Des Moines city trolley, the Minnesota Republican told ABC's Jonathan Karl, "I'm in."

Well, sort of.

"I'm in for 2012 in that I want to be a part of the conversation in making sure that President Obama only serves one term, not two, because I want to make sure that we get someone who's going to be making the country work again. That's what I'm in for," Bachmann said.

"But I haven't made a decision yet to announce, obviously, if I'm a candidate or not, but I'm in for the conversation."

She said the feedback she has gotten thus far about a possible White House run has been "encouraging." And she thinks the president is beatable.

"I think that right now if the election were today I don't think that the president would be re-elected," she said.

In the wide-ranging interview, Bachmann, first elected in 2007, portrayed GOP leaders in Congress as weak-kneed moderates more eager to compromise with the president rather than confront him.

"We need to go toe-to-toe, eyeball-to-eyeball with the president and say, Mr. President, you are wrong on the government takeover of healthcare."

As a new member of the House Intelligence Committee, Bachmann had some stinging criticism for the Obama's handling of the situation in Libya.

"I look at the Libya situation and I think it's very concerning because the president essentially decided that American air sorties, air strikes, would be made with American soldiers and because of that, we're committed now," she said.

"I think that this is an effort where we're now engaged in Iraq and Afghanistan and to extend our troops into a third venue, with no overriding goal, no overriding objective, and no ending point, I think, is very dangerous."