Retiring Rep. Michele BachmannMichele Marie BachmannBoehner says he voted for Trump, didn't push back on election claims because he's retired Boehner: Trump 'stepped all over their loyalty' by lying to followers Boehner finally calls it as he sees it MORE (R-Minn.) on Friday expressed dismay that the House passed a $1.1 trillion "cromnibus" spending bill, calling it the "most consequential vote" of her career.
Asked by CNN's Wolf Blitzer to name the "most important vote" she took in her career, Bachmann pointed to Thursday night's vote to keep the government funded and avoid a shutdown.
"The one I took last night," she said on "Wolf." "It was the most consequential vote because it really is a constitutional crisis."
The spending package combined an omnibus for much of the government with a shorter continuing resolution to fund the Department of Homeland Security for three months, setting up a fight over President Obama's executive action on immigration.
Bachmann characterized the bill as a vote for "amnesty."
"Remember, amnesty is not a law that Congress passed, the president just spoke it into existence," she added.
“There was no compromise. This was a top-down, jam it down your throat bill, on both sides of the aisle,” said Bachmann.
Bachmann said she and Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) asked Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) to allow lawmakers a vote on language that would challenge the president’s action deferring deportations for millions of illegal immigrants.
She railed on House leadership for joining with President Obama and other Democrats in whipping support for the bill.
“This was the political establishment on both sides of the aisle,” she said. “They worked out a deal, the cake was baked.”
The four-term congresswoman did not seek reelection in November. She told Blitzer she was excited to “take the handcuffs” off and travel the country meeting with conservative groups of the 2016 presidential race. Bachmann ran for president in 2012, winning the Ames Straw Poll in Iowa.
“I occupy a very unique space, I’m the only woman on the Republican side who has ever been in presidential debate,” she said.
“Presumably, we will have a woman again on the Democratic ticket in 2016, so [I] want to weigh in on that race.”
Bachmann’s been a vocal critic of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who is largely seen as the front-runner for the Democratic nomination.
“I’ve been on the front line for eight years,” Bachmann said.
“While Mrs. Clinton was secretary of State, I was a member on the Intelligence Committee, I was in Congress at the time, dealing with this issue of Benghazi and all the rest. I have a lot to say about these issues for 2016.”