Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., gave an interview to the Pioneer Press on Monday and addressed the controversy in which she alleges that Muslim extremists are operating inside the U.S. government. She alleges that two in particular appear to have ties to the Muslim Brotherhood: Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., and a top aide to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
Clinton has now responded, CBS News reports. After a speech Monday, she was asked about "Islamophobia" in the United States and whether she had any comment about the allegations Bachmann made of her aide, Huma Abedin. Clinton said leaders need to protect diversity in their nations. She said, "We saw Republicans stepping up and standing up against the kind of assaults that really have no place in our politics."
Bachmann has been roundly criticized for the comments. Critics include Republicans and members of the House Intelligence Committee, on which she sits. Few have defended her, although House Majority Leader Eric Cantor suggests that the nation's security was her top concern.
But Bachmann is not backing off. "The concerns I have and my colleagues have are real," Bachmann told the Pioneer Press. "We cannot elevate political correctness over national security."
She says she has offered ample proof, much of it on her website. "If a 15-page letter with 59 footnotes explaining why we have these questions and concerns doesn't answer that, I don't know what does," Bachmann told the newspaper.
Despite the controversy, and harsh words from Ellison, Bachmann hopes to work with him on Medicaid reform, the St. Michael Patch reports.
Meanwhile, an Iowa campaign aide for Bachmann's former presidential campaign sued the Minnesota congresswoman and her senior campaign aides on Monday, alleging an official stole a private email list and that she was blamed for its use, the Associated Press reports.