Former U.S. representative Michele Bachmann has decided not to run for the U.S. Senate seat recently vacated by Al Franken, just weeks after she told a televangelist she was mulling the decision. Franken resigned effective last month after facing allegations of sexual misconduct.
In a broadcast published by Right Wing Watch, Bachmann told Minnesota radio host Jan Markell on Saturday that she’s decided against running for office, saying she prayed about the race and “wasn’t hearing any call from God to do this.” Sen. Tina Smith, who was appointed to Franken’s seat, is running for the same seat in the November election, along with Republican state Sen. Karin Housley and a Democratic contender, Minneapolis attorney Nick Leonard.
Bachmann has repeatedly used the language of many conservative Christians, emphasizing that she should have a “calling” from God to run.
“I took it to the Lord in a very quiet way . . . I prayed, I tried to have my ears open and hear what God was saying to me,” she said on the show.
Bachmann is a popular speaker within some conservative Christian circles, and she was part of President Trump’s evangelical advisory council during his campaign. She represented Minnesota’s 6th Congressional District from 2007 to 2015 and was the first Republican woman to represent Minnesota in the U.S. House. She was also one of the final six Republican candidates in the 2012 presidential election.
“I’ve always prayed and tried to seek out what God’s will for me would be, and each time before, I’ve had this inner sense that I’m supposed to do this, I’m supposed to run,” Bachmann said on the show. “It doesn’t mean a guarantee that I’ll win, but all it means is that that’s what I sensed in my spirit, that God wanted me to run. I had absolutely no sense from the Lord at all that I was supposed to run this time.”
Bachmann first raised the idea of running when she appeared on a show in December with televangelist Jim Bakker.
“The question is: Should it be me, should it be now? But there’s also a price to pay. The price is bigger than ever because the swamp is so toxic,” Bachmann said on Bakker’s show.