Those questions and more may be answered when Michele Bachmann and Tim Pawlenty show up for a televised Republican presidential debate on June 13 in New Hampshire.[jump]
It will be the first time the two Minnesotans will have shared a debate stage.
And it will be the first time the country can try and figure out whether Bachmann is anything more than a media phenomenon.
Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum will also take part. CNN's John King will be the moderator.
Bachmann has yet to officially announce her candidacy, and it's pretty clear that the Pawlenty camp is getting tired of her. Twice in recent weeks his surrogates have called her "a pain in the pass."
And who can blame them, really? For months, Pawlenty has carefully orchestrated a political operation, while Bachmann seems to just show up on Fox News and Facebook and steal his Minnesota thunder.
But that may be changing.
We don't want to put too much stock in one survey's results, but we noticed that T-Paw has surged in the latest Public Policy Polling numbers, tucking into third place behind Mitt Romney and Sarah Palin.
Bachmann's in sixth place, down in Ron Paul territory.
Given the choices of Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman, Sarah Palin, Ron Paul, Tim Pawlenty, and Mitt Romney, who would you most like to see as the Republican candidate for President next year?
Mitt Romney: 16% Sarah Palin: 16% Tim Pawlenty: 13% Herman Cain: 12% Undecided: 12% Michele Bachmann: 9% Ron Paul: 9% Newt Gingrich: 9% Jon Huntsman: 4%
More reading of the tea leaves: A Palin run may be curtains for Bachmann, who holds 9 percent support with Palin the in the race. Without Palin, Bachmann pulls even with Pawlenty at 13 percent.
If Sarah Palin didn't run and the choices were just Michele Bachmann, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman, Ron Paul, Tim Pawlenty, and Mitt Romney who would you most like to see as the nominee?
Mitt Romney: 20% Tim Pawlenty: 13% Michele Bachmann: 13% Newt Gingrich: 13% Undecided: 13% Herman Cain: 12% Ron Paul: 11% Jon Huntsman: 4%
Palin? Yesterday she was gallivanting around New Hampshire, coincidentally on the same day Mitt Romney surprised absolutely no one and formally announced his candidacy. And just to prove how boring Romney really is, Palin's media circus was splashed big across the front page of the biggest paper in the state, while Romney's photo op barely rated a single column blurb:
More insanity: www.shitbachmannsays.com