Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), a seventh-generation Iowan, told Fox News from Des Moines on Friday evening that her visit there isn't about "personal ambition" in the early caucus state.
Bachmann, a Tea Party favorite, said she was there to "lay out the very important issues that I think Iowans will be grappling with for the next 24 months," including repealing healthcare reform.
"We repealed 'Obamacare' in the House of Representatives this week, but in order to be able to get rid of it, we have to be able to have a different president and a different United States Senate," she said.
The congresswoman said it was her ties to her home state that influenced her to come down and "set the table, so to speak."
"I didn't come down here this time for personal ambition," Bachmann said. "I really came because so much is at stake in 2012. Of course, people will be speculating about who our nominee will be. That's only natural."
The name of that nominee should "bubble up" in a year, she said.
She added that she had been meeting Democrats and independents who voted Republican in the midterms. " And I had a lot of encouragement for myself. But again, the focus wasn't on me," she said. "The focus was on the big issues that were here, and also the fact that we can't sit this out. We have to start engaging now because the issues are that important going forward."
Pressed by host Greta van Susteren to give some insight into her own White House ambitions, Bachmann said she didn't feel the pressure.
"I don't feel any pressure that I have to make a decision because I am so
motivated by what I have seen and for my four years in Congress," Bachmann said.
The Tea Party Express is hosting a rebuttal to President Obama's State of the Union speech Tuesday night on its website, even as House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) delivers the official GOP response.