Anne Nolan, attorney and MBA, first DFLer to announce run against Michele Bachmann

It's official -- Michele Bachmann will not run unopposed in her bid to be reelected as Minnesota's U.S. House representative from the 6th congressional district.

Yesterday, Anne Nolan, an attorney and MBA who works for a workplace consulting and training business, announced she'll be seeking the DFL endorsement to run in the 6th.

Nolan, who has mounted two failed campaigns for the Minnesota House since 2004, said her run against Bachmann is inspired by the Occupy movement.

She told the St. Cloud Times: "I feel this is a real opportunity for a candidate to raise the economic issues that the Occupy movement is talking about."

Nolan is economically progressive -- a news release announcing her candidacy says she supports "a sales tax on Wall Street speculative financial transactions," prosecuting banks that committed mortgage fraud, and halting certain foreclosures. Her website lists eliminating special tax breaks for high-bracket earners as one of her top priorities.

But while she's economically progressive, she describes herself as a "pro-life, social justice Democrat," with ethical principles rooted in Catholic social teaching. That combination could play well in the newly redistricted, now-more-exurban-than-ever 6th.

Bachmann crushed her DFL competition in 2010, but an ill-fated presidential run has reduced her popularity at home.
Bachmann crushed her DFL competition in 2010, but an ill-fated presidential run has reduced her popularity at home.

As the Times notes, Bachmann "is a national rock star among conservative activists" and raised more money than any other U.S. House candidates during the 2010 campaign cycle while cruising to re-election by nearly 13 percentage points. This suggests Nolan faces an uphill battle.

But Bachmann's ill-fated bid for the GOP presidential nomination negatively affected her approval ratings here at home -- a poll released in late January found that Bachmann only has a 34 percent favorability rating, with 57 percent of Minnesota voters viewing her negatively. Only 37 percent of state voters said they think she should run for reelection to her House seat, while 57 percent said she should scram.

Nolan is the first DFLer in the race, but she might not be the last. The 6th district DFL convention takes place April 14, and Nolan said she'll only run in November if the party decides to back her.

-- Redistricting puts Bachmann and McCollum in same district, but Michele will run elsewhere
-- New poll: Bachmann, Pawlenty unpopular with Minnesotans

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