Michele Bachmann First Told 'Surprise' Miscarriage Story in 2008 (VIDEO)

06/30/2011 04:19 pm ET | Updated Aug 30, 2011

WASHINGTON -- Republican presidential candidate Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) told a very personal story about having a miscarriage to a town hall audience in South Carolina Wednesday in the context of explaining her position on abortion.

“After our second was born, we became pregnant with a third baby,” she said. “It was an unexpected baby, but of course we were delighted to have this child. The child was coming along and we ended up losing our child. And it was devastating to both of us, as you can imagine if any of you have lost a child.”

Bachmann said the experience shaped her staunchly pro-life stance and led her and her husband Marcus to take in 23 foster children in addition to their five biological children.

“At that moment, we didn’t think of ourselves as overly career-minded or overly materialistic but when we lost that child, it changed us, and it changed us forever,” she said. “We made a commitment that no matter how many children were brought into our life, we would receive them because we are committed to life.”

A number of media outlets have reported the story as a "surprise disclosure," and CNN's Peter Hamby tweeted that even some of Bachmann's staffers were "caught by surprise."

But a tearful Bachmann actually told the same story back in 2008 on the House Floor:

"I thank my husband, who stood by me with our five babies and who stood by me when we lost a baby," she said during floor debates over an abortion bill. "I thank you for standing by me when we didn't know if we could go on anymore, and I thank you for stepping up to the plate, my husband, for being willing to bring 23 foster children into our home."

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