Bachmann tough on illegal immigration - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Bachmann tough on illegal immigration

BOCA RATON, FL (WFLX) Once a bright star in the Republican race for the presidency, Michele Bachmann visited South Florida Thursday to raise money for her struggling campaign.

But she also hammered on a hot-button issue in South Florida: illegal immigration.

In a Fort Lauderdale hotel conference room, Michele Bachmann called her solutions for illegal immigration "tough love."

"I would make sure that our border security guards are fully resourced," said Bachmann.

She wants a fence along the southern border with Mexico, English as the nation's official language, to deport all illegals, and to change the constitution to ban automatic citizenship for anyone born on American soil.

"My position won't alienate at all. In fact, it will bring Latino voters in," said Bachmann.

Political analyst Brian Crowley suspects that she's not overly worried about how her plans will play here - considering her most important audience is still Republican voters in Iowa - not moderate voters in Florida.

"If you want to win over the important Hispanic bloc in this state, you have to be careful with how you address the immigration issue. What plays in Iowa is not going to play well in South Florida," said Crowley.

And to Bachmann, Crowley says, Iowa is everything.

"If she fails to win Iowa or come in a very close second, Michele Bachmann's campaign is likely over," said Crowley.

She might be in trouble.

Although Iowa is where her campaign is spending virtually all of its money, she's still in fifth place, nearly twenty points behind current pack-leader Newt Gingrich.

She won the Ames Iowa straw poll in August, and might need a repeat performance if she's to be relevant by the time Florida's January 31st primary rolls around.

"I think that we will come in first or second in Iowa. I've been working very hard on the ground. I think that will be the cannon shot that changes the world," said Bachmann.

She didn't hold any public meet and greets with voters on Thursday night.

Instead it was two fundraisers.

All money that Crowley says she'll use in Iowa.

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