Michele Bachmann found herself in a little hot water when she repeated what a woman said to her after the last Republican debate. Bachmann, one of the Republican presidential candidates for 2012, was engaged in a heated contest back and forth with her competition, Rick Perry over his Texas mandate that pre-teen girls get the HPV vaccine. Clearly against Perry’s mandate, Bachmann told Fox News;
“There’s a woman who came up crying to me tonight after the debate. She said her daughter was given that vaccine. She told me her daughter suffered mental retardation as a result. There are very dangerous consequences.”
Of course, there’s no proof that the HPV vaccine cause mental retardation, but for whatever reason, and we assume it’s all political, Bachmann felt the need to repeat this woman’s claim to the media. Maybe she thought saying it to Fox News was a safe place to spread her lie and misinformation, afterall, that’s what Fox does all the time. But Bachmann’s inaccurate statement caused a huge backlash from actual professionals in the medical industry. Even her Republican base has raised an eyebrow on Bachmann’s lie, and she’s now trying to take back her statement.
Asked about her false statement by the Associated Press, Bachmann played the innocent role;
“All I was doing is relaying what a woman had said. I relayed what she said. I wasn’t attesting to her accuracy. I wasn’t attesting to anything.”
Call me naïve, but as a so-called leader in the Republican party and an elected congresswoman, shouldn’t we expect a certain level of honesty and accuracy from these people? How low has this nation descended to, when leaders think they can repeat certain claims, without “attesting” to their accuracy?
What message are we sending to the kids? What is this saying about the future of politics in the country?