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Bachmann: Portrait of the politician as a young lawyer

by Brad A. Greenberg

August 22, 2011 | 9:55 am

There have been 12 U.S. presidents, including Barack Obama, who have attended law school. Only seven completely their degree and, surprisingly, only four of them from Harvard or Yale. Five of the remaining eight attended other top-14 schools, as they are known (Columbia, Duke, Georgetown and Virginia). Only three attended schools outside what today’s top 50, according to U.S. News & World Report. However, getting a legal education was a little different in Taft and McKinley’s days.

Like Nixon and Hayes and Taft, Michele Bachmann practiced law before going into politics. She attended the law school at Oral Roberts University. While that is not Harvard or Yale—it’s not in U.S. News’ top 100, there is no reason to believe that a graduate of the O.W. Coburn School of Law could not make a great president.

That is not the point of this article in the Minneapolis Star Tribune, which focuses on Bachmann’s role as a lawyer for the IRS and how her view of American society was shaped by her law school years. I’m not that interested in the tax-man stuff; the article makes no reference to the Apostle Matthew. The stuff from ORU, though, is interesting:

Among the most influential faculty members, Burnetti said, was constitutional law Prof. John Eidsmoe, who was working on a book called “Christianity and the Constitution.’’ Bachmann told an audience in Iowa that she was Eidsmoe’s research assistant when he wrote the book. “He taught me about so many aspects of our godly heritage,’’ she said in her March 2011 speech.

In the book, Eidsmoe argued that biblical principles are embodied in the Constitution, and wrote that, “Christians are needed to re-establish the moral tone of society.’‘

H. Wayne House, a Christian author who studied with Bachmann at Oral Roberts, said an overarching theme at the school was the integration of faith and law. He described Bachmann as a high-energy student who embraced the teachings with a “very quick mind.’‘

“She had a sincere interest in how one’s faith and law fit together, faith and government,’’ House said.

You can read the rest here, but the above is the end of the article. Which is odd. Because Bachmann’s interest was far from uncommon. I’m curious, though, about the answers she found.

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Since launching the blog in 2007, I’ve referred to myself as “a God-fearing Christian with devilishly good Jewish looks.” The description, I’d say, is an accurate one,...

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