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Bachmann Backs Hensarling for GOP Conference Chairman

Rep. Michele Bachmann dropped her bid to chair the House Republican Conference on Wednesday evening, giving her support to her competitor for the job.

The Minnesotan was running against Rep. Jeb Hensarling (Texas) to fill the leadership position vacated by Rep. Mike Pence (Ind.).

Bachmann, who has aligned herself with the tea party movement, had been unable to secure many public endorsements beyond Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) and fellow members of the Minnesota delegation. Hensarling has received public endorsements from prominent Republicans including Minority Whip Eric Cantor (Va.), who is expected to rise to Majority Leader in the next Congress, Rep. Paul Ryan (Wis.), and Rep. Ron Paul (Texas).

Bachmann said in a statement Wednesday that she supports Hensarling for the job. “Jeb has demonstrated his commitment to limited government, reduced spending and lower taxes and he will be a strong voice for the Tea Party’s call for these values,” Bachmann said. “I look forward to continuing my consistent support of the Tea Party. I plan to advance the Tea Party ideals through their listening arm, the Tea Party Caucus. It is my wish to bring new faces to the caucus, including freshmen members.”

Bachmann said that she had spoken with presumptive Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and that she was convinced Republican leaders “will wholeheartedly work towards the issues the American people are calling for such as fiscal responsibility, ending the bailouts and repealing Obamacare.”

Hensarling welcomed Bachmann’s support. “Michele Bachmann is a committed movement conservative whose effective voice played an important role in America’s decision to trust House Republicans once again,” he said in a statement. “I look forward to her energetic leadership in a united House Republican Conference during the 112th Congress.”

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