Monday, June 27, 2011

Michele Bachmann claims 'never a penny' in farm profits but federal disclosure forms say she's lying

By Karl Bremer

Michele Bachmann kicked off her presidential campaign in the farm state of Iowa by lying about the federal farm subsidies she's profited from on her family's farm.

When asked about her apparent hypocrisy in profiting from government subsidies while at the same time campaigning against them and calling them "outrageous pork," Bachmann told Chris Wallace on Fox News that she and her husband had "never gotten a penny of money from the farm."

Either Bachmann lied to a national tv audience when she said that, or she's been filing false federal financial disclosure forms with Congress since 2007.

Bachmann has claimed between $32,503 and $105,000 in income from the Bachmann Farm Family Limited Partnership since 2007, according to her congressional financial disclosure forms for 2007, 2009 and 2010. She still has not reported her 2008 income from the farm on her disclosure form from that year—an apparent violation of congressional reporting requirements. And as in years past, Bachmann hasn't bothered to file her financial disclosure form for 2011 and has been granted an extension.

The Bachmann Farm Family Partnership comprises 951 acres with at least one home on 38 parcels in Independence, WI, with a total assessed value of $664,950. Michele and Marcus Bachmann are partners in the farm partnership, which was established April 12, 2001, with an ownership share valued at between $100,001 and $250,000. Its corporate records on file with the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions still list Paul Bachmann of Independence, WI, as the partnership’s general partner and registered agent, even though Paul Bachmann (Marcus Bachmann's father) has been dead since May 2009.

The Bachmann Family farm has collected a total of $154,755 in federal farm subsidies since the partnership was formed in 2001, most of it in corn and dairy subsidies. Paul Bachmann collected a total of $259,332 in federal farm subsidies from 1995-2009. However, it’s not known whether Michele and Marcus were involved in the farm prior to the establishment of the family partnership in 2001.

I broke the Bachmann farm subsidies story in 2007 here, and it's been re-reported by numerous news organizations over the years, including the Los Angeles Times last week. But it hasn't been until recently that Bachmann has outright lied about having profited from the very farm subsidies she rails against.

Will the media let Bachmann get away with lying about profiting from farm subsidies? Or will they stay focused on Chris Wallace asking Bachmann if she's a "flake?" I'll give you one guess.

Illustration by Ken Avidor.


  1. All hail to Astroturf TeaBparty Queen (ASQ), Michele Bachmann. Isn't she the one that who rails against the Federal Government while every year she benefits from farm subsidies and adopts kids to work them on same farm. Oh yeah she is also a self-proclaimed historian on the US Founding Fathers and US history. The sad truth she will lie to get her way, what honor is there in that? But if you manipulate our US history and double down when you are found out, well don’t go crying to Fake News when you lose. Kind of like the Former half-term Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (Most recent quitter of her Bus Tour to restore America). We remember what happen when after “W” manipulate Florida to win the presidency and his failure to win any of the two wars he started that devastated our treasury and ruined our economy for the next 50 years. If the GOP thinks that Michele Bachmann is the answer, good luck with that.

  2. I believe a change in your background 'wallpaper' would make your excellent site far better. It's very hard to read due to little contrast of the font and background. May seem a picky little thing, but ask some opinions on it... Doesn't make one want to read much, and truth is, you've got a lot of serious subjects to present.
    Keep up the good work, it's a breath of fresh air.
    Bob in California

  3. Maybe Bachmann is just providing a little organic manure for those crops on which she and hubby get subsidies.

    While perusing those forms she filed, when she did file them, I wonder how many federal dollars were funneled through her and hubby's quack psychology practice that prays away the gay?

    Chris Wallace must have had a leash correction from the Rupert Murdoch establishment. He apologized to Bachmann for his flake question, which is too bad - it was a legitimate question.

    Bachmann didn't fare as well with Bob Schieffer on Sunday; he called her out on failing to answer his question about her many statements which failed fact checking. I doubt he will be apologizing any time soon, or that anyone other than Fox or equally partisan right wing media will be giving Bachmann the kind of free ride that the right does for that.

  4. I have no stake in this. I live in Canada. But, I watched your interview on Democracy Now!and thought it would be only fair to point out to people who are not involved in agriculture that it is not the kind of business that one can make a lot of money at. I have a partnership in a family farm and have recieved no earnings since '94. When she says that she and her husband haven't taken a penny from the family farm, it's probably because that money needed to be immediately reinvested to keep the farm afloat.

  5. Hey, came by and saw this after seeing you on DN! Suggestion -- could you pick a blog background that makes it easier to read your posts? :) Keep up the good work, Dug

  6. Oops-- clarification: it's only on the homepage where you don't have the pale yellow background -- on my computer, it's mostly the paisley-like brown thingy. Sorry! :)

  7. She lied about profiting from her dead father-in-law's farm and the subsidies her and her husband continue to collect even though her husband's father is dead. Why is he still listed as the partnership general partner and registered agent even though he has been dead for almost four years now? This constitutes fraud and deception,Wisconsin and the Federal Goverment should file against the two for lying, deception and fraud! She then has the gall to say that her and her husband have not profited from the farm or the farm subsidies on national television!

  8. Regarding the background color, a fix is in the works. Meanwhile, just click on the article headline and it will correct itself. Two other work-arounds--Firefox seems to be the problem, so try viewing it with Internet Explorer. There also is a tool on the right on IE for "Compatibility view." That works with some sites also. Bear with me ...

  9. Regarding not a penny of money from the farm, she's a limited partner. Recorded income does not necessarily mean she ever received a cash distribution. I showed income on some LLC's for years and did not receive a penny until the businesses were sold, as it was all reinvested. The disclosure form does not prove either way, contrary to the hyperventilating media "fact check". Her campaign needs to clarify.

    As for the "hypocrisy" of accepting subsidies while campaigning against them, wake me up when Obama, Reid, Pelosi et al return the hundreds of thousands of dollars they gained from the Bush tax cuts while at the same time campaigning against them and calling them "immoral".

  10. Uh-oh! Dan's activated the movable goalposts again. He must have just lost an argument.

  11. Just copied this YouTube link for those of you who need an argument that Marcus Bachmann may not be what he "appears(?)".

  12. ---- Recorded income does not necessarily mean she ever received a cash distribution. ----

    This is what you're going with? Semantics? What you say is about as accurate as saying, "I wore a condom so, technically, I didn't have sex with her. I didn't touch her."

    Not having cash in you hand is not the same as not getting the income. Heck, I get an income every month but it is direct deposit and I use my visa card so I never touch the cash. Does that mean I'm not receiving an income?

    repub/con/bagger are consistent if they are anything. This article is about Michele Bachmann but you still seem to work a jab in there for President Obama. Since you've brought it up, when are the koch bros going to actually pay any taxes?