Michele Bachmann

Yahoo! News and ABC News staff

Tea party star Michele Bachmann formally launched her campaign for the White House on Monday, June 27, in Waterloo, Iowa, where she was born.“We can't afford four more years of failed leadership here at home and abroad,” she proclaimed.

“We can't afford four more years of millions of Americans who out of work and who aren’t making enough in wages to support a family.

“We can't afford four more years of Barack Obama.”

Bachmann, 55, is known for doing things her own way, on her own terms. She became the first Republican woman elected to represent Minnesota in the House of Representatives five years ago, winning the seat in the Sixth Congressional District that includes several suburbs of the Twin Cities.

Before that she served for six years as a Minnesota state senator. She has become the darling of the Tea Party movement in Congress, railing against federal spending, trying to repeal President Obama's health care overhaul and establishing the Tea Party Caucus in 2010.

It's not only in her professional life that Bachmann has bucked convention, but in her personal life as well. She and Marcus, her husband of more than 30 years, have cared for 23 foster children, to say nothing of the five children of their own. She has a degree in tax law, and she once worked for the IRS.

Profile Details

  • Birthplace: Waterloo, Iowa
  • Family: Marcus (husband); Children: Lucas, Harrison, Elisa, Caroline, Sophia
  • Religion: Lutheran
  • Job before candidacy: Congresswoman
  • Political experience: Has never run for president; serving third term in U.S. House; former Minnesota state senator.
  • Most recent book written: N/A

More on Michele Bachmann: She’s a candidate who knows how to cause a stir.

Pros: Strong support from Tea Party activists. Minnesota base gives her great access and credibility in Iowa. Proven ability to raise money.

Cons: A polarizing figure. Can she broaden her appeal beyond a narrow slice of the Republican electorate?

Bachmann on the Web: