Bachmann to Iowa as she considers presidential bid

Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) is planning a trip to Iowa, perhaps to explore the possibility of a run for president in 2012.

Bachmann's office confirmed on Wednesday that the Tea Party lawmaker planned to hold a fundraiser in Des Moines and other private meetings in the Hawkeye State later this month.

The third-term congresswoman hasn't ruled out a run for president, said her spokesman, Sergio Gor.

"Everything's still on the table, and the congresswoman hasn't ruled anything out," he said, confirming an ABC News report from earlier Wednesday.

Bachmann's been a darling of Tea Party conservatives for her outspoken stances on some issues. She formed the House Tea Party Caucus, which she leads, and ran for the fourth-ranking position of chairwoman of the conference in the new GOP House before bowing out.

The congresswoman might sense an opening for a House conservative in the field, now that Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) seems more inclined to run for governor than for president. But what spot Bachmann might occupy in the field could depend on former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's (R) decision. Bachmann and Palin are seen as politicians in a similar mold in terms of viewpoints and appeal; Palin campaigned for Bachmann's reelection last year.

If nothing else, Bachmann could benefit from a higher profile thanks to her trip to Iowa, which is her second. That increased platform could help her level a challenge to Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) in 2012, another rumored possibility.