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Bachmann's Tea Party Caucus Approved

Tea Party, Republicans, GOP
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A House committee has approved Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann's proposal to create an official House Tea Party Caucus.

Bachmann announced via Twitter that the Committee on House Administration approved her request.

The new caucus, Bachmann announced last week, will focus on "fiscal responsibility, adherence to the Constitution, and limited government."

She said in a statement: "This caucus will espouse the timeless principles of our founding, principles that all Members of Congress have sworn to uphold. The American people are doing their part and making their voices heard and this caucus will prove that there are some here in Washington willing to listen."

As CBS News Capitol Hill producer Jill Jackson reports, there are already a number of caucuses in Congress, representing all kinds of interests -- ranging from the Congressional Black Caucus to the Wine Caucus, to which many Northern California members belong.

Still, not all Republicans may be ready for a Tea Party caucus, Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne contends.

While Bachmann is already dedicated to the movement, some other Republicans " would like the Tea Party to rally as many right-of-center voters to the polls as possible but not have to take any responsibility for the movement's more radical stands or the unseemly rhetoric that issues from some of its supporters," Dionne writes.

He continues: "At the very moment many Republicans are trying to figure out how to finesse the Tea Party, Bachmann is setting out to make the finesse a little bit harder."

At least one other Republican, however, is already on board with Bachmann, Jill Jackson reports: When asked if he'd join the Tea Party Caucus, Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) said, "You betcha."
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