Rainier Ehrhardt, Associated Press
Rep. Michele Bachmann said Tuesday she still thinks she has a good chance of winning the Iowa Republican caucuses, saying presidential campaign rivals Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney "have significant flaws."
Bachmann said in a nationally broadcast interview that she, more than her rivals, personifies the kind of conservative values Iowa Republicans want, and said she believes "we're going to be shocked on Jan. 3 when we see the results."
Bachmann commented at a time when polls continue to show her in the lower tier of candidates vying to challenge President Barack Obama next year.
Asked on CBS's "The Early Show" about Gingrich's surge to top of the polls, Bachmann replied that "two weeks can be an eternity" in a White House campaign. She appeared on the same day that Romney awaited an endorsement from former Vice President Dan Quayle and former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman prepared for an appearance in Washington before the Heritage Foundation's Bloggers Briefing.
"I think we're perfectly situated to be where we want to be," Bachmann said. She said the campaign is like a "political Wall Street," with candidates' stock rising and falling. And she accused both Gingrich and Romney of being supporters of "Obamacare," and said that both backed the government bailout of financial institutions.
The Minnesota Republican asserted that Romney had reversed his position on "life" issues and said that both Romney and Gingrich "are flawed candidates."
Bachmann wouldn't say whether she will participate in a Dec. 27 debate in Des Moines moderated by real estate magnate Donald Trump. She said she likes Trump, but that she's still weighing whether to appear.
Gingrich has accepted the debate invitation, and but the other candidates are still thinking it over.
Huntsman, in an appearance Tuesday on NBC's "Today" show, accused Romney of being indecisive, and cited the former Massachusetts governor's failure to say whether he would join the Des Moines debate is an example.
"As usual, Mr. Romney can't make a decision. He's weighing both sides and may flip-flop on this as well," Huntsman said.
He said that "people are giving us a second look, a first look in some cases."
"I'm running against a conservative flip-flopper," Huntsman said of Romney. "I'm running against a grandiose conservative. People are coming around to the reality that I'm a consistent conservative."
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