Peter Waldron, the evangelical leader who served as an aide to Michele Bachmann during the Iowa caucus fight, has already accused her of failing to pay staffers from that state. Now he’s making some really odd accusations against her and Brett O’Donnell, the former Liberty University debate coach who was also a campaign aide.
Michele Bachmann’s high-profile debate coach, Brett O’Donnell, developed an “unnatural” and “Rasputin-like” relationship with his candidate during her failed 2012 presidential campaign, another former aide told BuzzFeed, a charge O’Donnell denies…
“He prohibited her husband, Dr. Marcus Bachmann, from sleeping in the same room with wife while on the campaign trail,” Waldron said in an email to BuzzFeed. “He prohibited legendary consultants Ed Rollins and Ed Goeas from attending debate prep sessions. He told her when she could get off the bus (Waterloo event with Gov. Perry), he wrote most of the words that came out of her mouth, he wrote all of her speeches.”…
Waldron, who was among a wave of staffers pushed to the sidelines as O’Donnell emerged as a central adviser, blamed him for her flagging campaign.
“Frankly, Brett exercised ‘Rasputin-like control over Michele. More than one staffer was grateful to God that she didn’t win the nomination because of the influence that Brett had over her,” Waldron said.
“He attempted to re-shape Mrs. Bachmann’s personality from her popular 2010 to spring 2011 into his own image,” he said. “Pastors in IA and SC complained to me privately that Mrs. Bachmann spent too much time alone with Brett, they even criticized the times the two of them held hands to pray apart from others. Brett resented Mrs. Bachmann’s confidence in me.”
Waldron said that at the time, Bachmann appeared to even be fearful of O’Donnell.
“Once she asked me to ride on the bus with her to pray. Brett’s objection was so intense that for the good of the order, I followed the bus in my personal vehicle,” said Waldron. “On one occasion, she whispered to me, ‘Peter, don’t get off the bus no matter who tells you to get off.’ Another time, her personal assistant told me, ‘Peter, Michele does not want to you leave. Stay on the bus. Please pray for us.’”
Both O’Donnell and Bachmann’s people deny all of this, but of course they would do that even if it’s true. We have no way of knowing who is telling the truth. But O’Donnell, for all his faults (see my previous writing about the utter dishonesty with which the Liberty U debate team was promoted), has a pretty strong track record as a political strategist. He’s led more than one candidate on a comeback after problems during a campaign.