Michele Bachmann says she is 'going to different perch'

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Retiring U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann says she isn't going away, she's "just going to a different perch."

The Republican gave the keynote address Friday night during the 6th Congressional District's GOP convention in Monticello. Delegates are expected to endorse their preferred successor Saturday.

The St. Cloud Times reports that Bachmann told the crowd she rarely struggled with a vote in Congress because she knew herself and her district. She also hailed her mother's influence, recalled her first run for the Minnesota Senate in 2000, and reflected on her 12-year career in elected office.

"I served in politics as unto the Lord," Bachmann said. "I made a decision that I was going to lay everything on the line. ... When I saw the lions in the jungle, I was going to take them on."

Bachmann, a leading figure in the tea party movement, didn't reveal details about what she planned to do after her current congressional term ends. She announced last May that her fourth term in Congress would be her last, choosing to leave on her own terms after an 18-month period in which her presidential bid collapsed and she barely managed to retain her House seat.

But she hinted that she didn't plan to a slow retirement.

"I'm not going away," Bachmann said. "I'm just going to a different perch."

Fellow politicians and supporters praised her work during the event, saying she'd be missed.

The Republicans who have announced they will try to succeed Bachmann are the GOP's 2010 gubernatorial nominee, Tom Emmer, and Anoka County Board chairwoman Rhonda Sivarajah.

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