After a 5 percent showing in the Iowa caucuses, which were won by former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) announced today that she is ending her bid for the Republican presidential nomination. According to CBS News:
"Last night, the people of Iowa spoke with a very clear voice, and so I have decided to stand aside," [Bachmann] said at a hastily-arranged news conference here.
"I have no regrets," she added. "None whatsoever. We never compromised our principles." She said she "looks forward to the next chapter in God's plan."
Bachmann did not endorse another candidate.
Bachmann, who opposes LGBT equality measures and supported a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriages, was asked on the morning of the Iowa caucuses about a particularly jarring comment regarding gay people that she had made earlier in her career. Asked by CNN's Soledad O'Brien about her 2004 comments that being gay was "part of Satan," Bachmann initially called it a "bizarre thing to bring up."
When O'Brien countered that she disagreed, Bachmann answered only indirectly, saying, "It's a gotcha question coming way out of the past. I stand very strong for marriage between one man and one woman. I believe in protecting human life from conception until natural death. I believe in the family, I believe in religious liberty and for people to practice their faith freely. That's important."
Earlier, Bachmann had succeeded in winning the Ames, Iowa, straw poll, in August 2011, garnering 4,823 votes out of a total 16,892 votes cast there.
Less than five months later, though, Bachmann received only 6,073 votes in the Iowa caucuses -- despite the fact that there were 122,255 votes cast there. With more than 100,000 more votes cast, Bachmann had only picked up an additional 1,250 votes.
About 12 hours after learning those results, Bachmann ended her campaign.