POLITICS

Michele Bachmann Campaign Denies Making Mistake About U.S. Embassy In Iran

12/01/2011 09:31 am ET | Updated Dec 01, 2011

Michele Bachmann's camp is claiming that she was "fully aware" of the fact that the U.S. hasn't had a functional embassy in Iran since 1980, despite earlier comments that appeared to suggest otherwise.

Speaking to supporters in Iowa Wednesday, Bachmann talked about the recent conflict in the Iranian capital of Tehran between protesters and the British embassy, which has led to the closure of the facility and the evacuation of diplomats.

"That's exactly what I would do [if I were president]," Bachmann said. "We wouldn't have an embassy in Iran. I wouldn't allow that to be there."

But the U.S. severed diplomatic ties with Iran in 1980, following the Iran Hostage Crisis. It vacated the embassy, recalled personnel and hasn't redeployed them since.

According to a subsequent statement from the campaign, Bachmann already knew this.

"Congresswoman Bachmann is a member of the House Select Committee on Intelligence and is fully aware that we do not have an embassy in Iran and have not had one since 1980," said the statement. "She was agreeing with the actions taken by the British to secure their embassy personnel and was speaking in the hypothetical, that if she was President of the United States and if we had an embassy in Iran, she would have taken the same actions as the British."

"Her remarks are being taken out of context, given that she has spoken on this subject several times in the past 24 hours and made it clear that she knew we did not have an Iranian embassy," the statement continued. "As she has previously stated, President Obama has taken his eye off of Iran, the most significant security threat in the region, and allowed them the luxury of time to move toward obtaining nuclear weapons. She will never allow Iran to obtain nuclear weapons that would threaten our ally Israel and the United States."

Bachmann hasn't let reports of her supposed mistake slow her down. On Wednesday evening, Bachmann, who has consistently been polling in the mid-single digits in national surveys, took a moment to float some potential choices for her vice president.

"We've got a lot of wonderful candidates who would fit that bill," Bachmann said during an interview on Fox News. "Easily comes to mind I think would be Senator Jim DeMint of South Carolina. Marco Rubio of Florida certainly would be in that category. There's a lot of great people out there. And Donald Trump is someone that I think a lot of people would be intrigued with, too."

She also named former Pennsylvania senator and rival candidate Rick Santorum as a possible VP or attorney general pick.

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