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Michele Bachmann Says 'Tar Baby' Comment Was Not Intended To Be Racial

04/19/12 05:00 PM ET AP

Michele Bachmann Tar Baby

MINNEAPOLIS -- A spokeswoman says U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann wasn't referring to race when she used the term "tar baby" to attack President Barack Obama's energy policy.

The Minnesota Republican told a conservative blog Wednesday that Obama's calls for more regulation of oil speculators "is just about waving a tar baby in the air and saying that something else is a problem." In the Uncle Remus story, "tar baby" describes a tar lump dressed as a person to catch Brer Rabbit. But "tar baby" also has been considered a derogatory term for black people.

Bachmann spokeswoman Becky Rogness says in a Thursday email that Bachmann made a point about Obama's understanding of oil prices that has "nothing to do with race." Instead, Rogness says Obama "has gotten himself into a sticky situation."

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Filed by Mollie Reilly  |