The Big Story Blog

Iowa: When the bells don't chime for Bachmann

Posted at 12:55 PM on December 31, 2011 by Emily Kaiser
Filed under: Iowa

While the sprint for Iowa voters speeds up for the top candidates in Tuesday's Iowa caucuses, Michele Bachmann's campaign headquarters are looking pretty grim.

In a New York Times piece documenting the ground war for voters in Iowa, we get a glimpse inside the Minnesota congresswoman's volunteer force that appears to be dwindling. Volunteers are supposed to sound a bell when they've secured a new voter, but the bell isn't chiming much anymore.

There were only three volunteers working the phones. One struggled with her computer, then took an hourlong dinner break. Another dialed a Bachmann donor, who promptly told her he was no longer interested in the candidate.

"He's been watching her the entire time, but just thinks that Gingrich will make a better president," she explained to her fellow volunteers. "I am not going to argue with people."

During nearly an hour of technological troubles and busy signals, the reception bells sounded for every new supporter rang just once.

About Paul Tosto

Paul Tosto

Paul Tosto writes the Big Story Blog for MPR News. He joined the newsroom in 2008 after more than 20 years reporting on education, politics and the economy for news wires and newspapers across the country.