Michele Bachstein?

Michele Bachmann (hisses, boos, and screams from the crowd) decided to visit a Chicago synagogue for a Yom Kippur service last week.

For a fundraiser? No.

To give a speech? No.

To collect donations? No.

To quietly attend a Yom Kippur service?


The mere appearance of this intimidating, middle-aged, 5’2” woman was unfathomable, “infuriating some congregants”.

She was so terrifying, in fact, that “some walked out of the service, and one man, Gary Sircus, launched a local campaign to support Bachmann’s opponent Jim Graves, who had a 400 percent uptick in donations from the Chicago area last week.”

Who is this man, and what did this monstrous mother of twenty-six do to him?

According to his Twitter, “Math Teacher and Northwestern Univ. Professor (School of Education) — reformed lawyer; husband and father of two; loves politics, killer sudoku and my family”. He also is apparently quite the Democrat activist, attending a Lawyers for Obama event in Chicago that the President attended.

And how does he characterize the arrival of this…this…”Conservative Evangelical Christian Congresswoman Michele Bachmann” (in one of the most redundant and overly-capitalized introductions of all-time)?

“Michele Bachman’s at Anshe Emet for Kol Nidre. In honor of this unholy person being in my synagogue, I’ve made a contribution to Jim Graves”

Ahh yes. A Democrat fundraiser/activist and Northwestern University professor (never mentioned in the article) on the holiest day in the Jewish calendar, a day for forgiveness, says:

“The holiness of the room and the holiness of the evening was greatly diminished for me, if not completely destroyed…Our congregation values and embodies tolerance, compassion, respect for individual rights, intelligence, science — all of the things that I think Michele Bachmann stands against.”

Of course! No better way to celebrate a day for forgiveness than to get up, leave, and give spiteful interviews because of prejudice against a fellow worshipper.

After all, donating money to her opponent and then making a huge fuss about it is the “best way to honor [her] visit”.

How did they even know she was there, anyway? Did she go on stage, gladhand in the aisles, pose for photo ops?

“Rabbi Michael Siegel publicly greeted Bachmann, in accordance with a common synagogue practice of greeting public officials in the audience.

‘I am aware of the fact that our congregation’s policy in regards to public officials clearly caused pain to some members of our community on the most precious day of reconciliation on the Jewish calendar,’ Siegel told the Tribune. ‘That we regret deeply.’

Perhaps Professor/Obama fundraiser Gary “Barnum and Bailey” Sircus was just miffed that he didn’t get introduced.

Making the conservative anti-gay politician’s appearance even more awkward, the service ‘featured a fictional father and son dialogue about Israel, including a piece celebrating Israel’s openness to the gay and lesbian community.’

Which obviously caused clearly-intolerant Michele Bachmann to up and leave.

Or no, wait…she stayed through the service while Gary (and others not named) up and left, because that’s what tolerance and forgiveness are all about.

A Romney-Bachmann Ticket?

Interesting tidbits from James Taranto:

As for Bachmann, her biggest advantage over Sarah Palin may be that she is now running for president. That means that if Romney were to name her a year hence, she would be a far more familiar and media-savvy politician than Palin was in 2008. She would be much less vulnerable to both smears from the partisan media and unforced errors like Palin’s disastrous interview with Katie Couric, whoever that is. For those who care about such things, the presence of a woman on the ticket might serve as an excuse to vote against re-electing the first black president.

To be sure, Bachmann is running for the presidential nomination, and while no one considers her the favorite, she’s surely a shorter shot than she was a few days ago. But a rival who is able to attract significant support in the primaries is likely to bring more to the ticket than one who isn’t. What did Joe Biden get Barack Obama other than comic relief?

An interesting aside: A Romney-Bachmann ticket, or a Romney-Pawlenty one for that matter, would combine candidates from the only state Richard Nixon lost in 1972 and the only state Reagan lost in 1984. What’s more, of the seven GOP candidates on stage Monday, all but Rick Santorum come from the home state of at least one Democratic presidential nominee since 1960. The four states in question–Georgia, Massachusetts, Minnesota and Texas–have produced a majority of Democratic nominees (8 of 13) during that time.