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Rep. Michelle Bachmann -- she of the memorable chat with Chris Matthews -- returns to D.C.

November 5, 2008 | 12:42 am

Michelle Bachmann found out the hard way that getting caught up in the moment with Chris Matthews can be hazardous to one's political health. But she survived to serve another two-year term in Congress.

In what no doubt became the most closely watched House race for Matthews, the Minnesota Republican retained a seat that was put in jeopardy after controversial comments she made on his MSNBC talk show a few weeks back.

Lots of other folks from outside the district were paying attention to it as well, after Bachmann questioned Barack Obama's patriotism and called for a wide-ranging media investigation of whether her colleagues on Capitol Hill held pro- or anti-American views. Her remarks sparked a spurt of donations to her Democratic rival, Elwyn Tinklenberg, and cast in doubt her reelection prospects.

Bachmann first won the suburban and exurban district surrounding Minnesota's Twin Cities two years ago by an 8-percentage-point margin.

With most of the vote counted in Tuesday's vote, she led Tinklenberg by 4 percentage points.

She had to sweat it out for a while, but in her victory speech to supporters, she said: "Thank you, Team Bachmann! You rock!"

[UPDATE]: On the stage near Bachmann was a sign that read, “Nice try Chris Matthews.”

No word on whether she'll be sitting down soon with him to discuss her close call.

-- Don Frederick