Bachmann: From Waterloo to the White House?

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WATERLOO, Iowa -- Conservative Christian and Tea Party favorite Michele Bachmann has jumped into the presidential race and she's making some big waves.

The latest Iowa poll shows 65 percent of Iowans have a favorable opinion of Bachmann.

CBN News spoke with the Minnesota congresswoman about where she's been and where she wants to go.

A Message for America

Bachmann came to her hometown of Waterloo with a message for all of America.

"Make no mistake about it, President Obama is a one-term president!" she told the assembled crowd as they cheered and applauded.

Bachmann is making it clear who she wants to court in her effort to win Republican votes.

"It's social conservatives, and I'm one of them. It's the Tea Party movement and I'm one of them," she said.

Historical Challenges

Bachmann faces some historical challenges. Only President James Garfield made it straight from the House of Representatives to the White House. No woman has ever made it either.

Plus, many within the GOP establishment see her more as a grassroots outsider than a serious presidential contender.

"For those who underestimate you, for those that say there's no way she can win the nomination, what do you say to those folks?" CBN News asked Bachmann.

"Well of course I can win the nomination. That's why I jumped into this race. I would never jump in if I didn't know that I have the ability and the resources to be able to win this race," she replied.

"There are going to be people in the GOP establishment who don't want to see Michele Bachmann as the nominee," CBN News pointed out.

"I think that people in the GOP establishment will be very happy with me as the nominee because I will represent our party well, our nation well," she responded.

Faith Most Important

Bachmann has already overcome a lot in her life. She grew up in Waterloo without much money and her parents divorced when she was attending junior high.

Bachmann will be the first to admit that her faith in God is the most important thing in her life. The roots of that relationship began here in Waterloo at First Lutheran Church. She was a youngster when she was here.

Then she moved on and at the age of 16 she had given her life over to Jesus Christ.

"There's a Bible verse that says, 'Godliness with contentment is great gain.' And that just in reflection in the last few weeks, I've been thinking a lot about that scripture because that's so emblematic of what my early life was," she explained. "Godliness with contentment was great gain."

She hopes the next great gain is the Republican nomination and she sure has some fans. One woman named Amy drove six hours with her kids in tow decked out in their Bachmann super hero t-shirts.

Others here are taking a wait-and-see approach.

For one in the crowd, research isn't needed. Bachmann's mother is going in another direction.

"I just pray that I know she will do well and the Lord will be with her. She has a lot of faith and we all do," Jean Amble said.

'Titanium Spine'

As someone who ran a small business, Bachmann said she believes she can take on the country's number one issue and has what she calls a "titanium spine" to do it.

"I will do what it takes to get the economy in place. I understand what the problem is and I understand what the solutions are," she told CBN News.

"We need a president who understands the times and knows what to do and has the courage to see it through. That's the titanium spine portion," Bachmann said.

Bachmann admits the bright lights and intensity of a presidential campaign will take spiritual strength too.

"I think the busier a person is or the more stressed or the more decisions that a person needs to have, I think the more in need we are of being in prayer," she said.

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David Brody

David Brody

CBN News Chief Political Correspondent

David Brody is an Emmy Award-winning veteran news journalist who has interviewed many prominent national figures during his career of nearly 25 years. Currently, David covers the White House and interviews national newsmakers across the country.  Follow David on Twitter @TheBrodyFile and "like" him at Facebook.com/TheBrodyFile.