Michele Bachmann Suggests Axing The Department Of Education

09/05/2011 09:28 pm ET | Updated Nov 05, 2011

Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), told a forum today that if elected president, she would consider cutting several federal programs and institutions, including the Department of Education -- reiterating a stance she's mentioned before.

Her comment was in response to an inquiry by Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) at the Palmetto Freedom Forum in South Carolina Monday. The Republican presidential primary forum focused on immigration, government downsizing and constitutional and social issues.

"The Constitution does not specifically enumerate nor does it give to the federal government the role and duty to superintend over education," Bachmann said. "That historically has been held by the parents and by local communities and by state government. To put that into the federal government as we saw a Department of Education in the late 1970s has eviscerated the constitutional understanding that the control of education truly lies with the parents."

Still, this wasn't the first time Bachmann has noted that she'd put the Education Department on her chopping block. In a speech in Iowa in April, the presidential hopeful fiercely criticized the department, saying that it is one agency "we can live without."

In addition to Bachmann, the candidates who took part were former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) and former Godfathers's Pizza CEO Herman Cain.

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this post incorrectly noted that Texas Governor Rick Perry took part in the forum. While Perry was scheduled to participate, he elected to return to Texas to respond to the wildfires affecting the central part of his state. It also referred to Mitt Romney as the governor of Massachusetts, when he is in fact the former governor.