Conversation With The Congresswoman [AUDIO]
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Congresswoman Michele Bachmann has taken some heat recently for her proposal to cut benefits for veterans. It was part of an overall plan to trim more than $430 billion from the federal budget. Something she says very few members of Congress have been willing to do.
The proposal initially included $4.5 billion in cuts to some veteran's services. Bachmann says the suggestion came from the Congressional Budget Office, which said those services were being duplicated. Bachmann says, after hearing from veterans across the country, she's backing off on those suggested cuts now.
Bachmann says the veterans who qualify for the duplicate payments are the some of the most severely disabled, and shouldn't have those services cut.
On President Obama meeting with GOP leaders:
President Barack Obama is reaching out to Republicans today (Wednesday) with a lunch for GOP leaders. It's something Obama acknowledged he needed to do after Republican gains in the November midterm elections.
The president will meet with House Speaker John Boehner, Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy. It's the first such meeting since Republicans assumed control of the House in January. Bachmann hopes the President will be open to hearing what Republicans have to say.
Press Secretary Robert Gibbs says the luncheon will focus heavily on the economy and spending, and discussion of Obama's proposals from the State of the Union, ahead of next week's release of the administration's 2012 budget proposal.
On Potential Presidential Run:
Bachmann was one of a handful of Republicans who attended a Tea Party Express Town Hall forum in Washington last (Tuesday) evening. Bachmann says she received a lot of encouragement from the crowd to run for President.
Bachmann has been a favorite of the Tea Party Express, she gave their response to President Obama's State of the Union Address. And Bachmann also formed the Tea Party caucus in Congress.