Bachmann campaign manager, deputy stepping down

Reuters News
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Posted: Sep 05, 2011 9:48 PM
Bachmann campaign manager, deputy stepping down

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Republican presidential hopeful Michele Bachmann's campaign manager, Ed Rollins, and his deputy are leaving their roles, Rollins said on Monday, adding he would remain in a senior advisory position.

"I have great affection for her. I'll do anything I can to help her," Rollins, a veteran of many political campaigns told CNN. "I just don't have the endurance to do 14-hour days, seven days a week anymore."

Deputy campaign manager David Polyansky was also stepping down, said Rollins. The shake-up was first reported by Politico.

Asked if Polyansky's departure involved strategic differences with the candidate, Rollins said, "There's no strategic differences in the sense of what we should be doing or saying -- it's just a question of how you use your time, how you use your resources."

Bachmann, a representative from Minnesota, moved into the top tier of candidates for the Republican presidential nomination last month with her win in the Iowa straw poll, an early test of strength in the 2012 race.

Bachmann's views, heated rhetoric and fiery attacks on President Barack Obama have won her fans among conservative activists and donors. She was one of the first elected officials to court the Tea Party, a loosely organized conservative activist movement.

Rollins conceded that Texas Governor Rick Perry's entry into the Republican race slowed Bachmann's momentum. Perry, who is also popular with social and religious conservatives, rose swiftly to the top of opinion polls among Republicans since entering the race last month.

"Legitimately, it's a (Mitt) Romney-Perry race," Rollins told CNN. I think she's (Bachmann) the third candidate at this point in time, which is way different and better than we thought when we started this thing and she's very much in this thing."

(Writing by Peter Cooney; Editing by Todd Eastham)