U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann
U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) addresses her hometown crowd at an event the day before the official announcement of her entering the 2012 presidential race, in Waterloo, Iowa June 26, 2011. Conservative firebrand Bachmann will test the limits of how far a favorite of the Tea Party movement can go when she formally launches her campaign for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination on Monday. REUTERS

Will Michele Bachmann win the Republican presidential nomination thanks to her core strengths of ultra hardcore religiosity, die hard support of the Christian orthodoxy and vociferous backing of the Tea party cult? Or will she wither away as the nomination fight gets tougher and the Republicans zero in on the electability of their candidate in 2012?

The way Bachmann stormed into the nomination fight has been commendable and her performance in the GOP Presidential debate catapulted her into the frontline of the race. A week after she officially announced her intention to run for president, she got solid backing of the Republican voters.

On Monday Bachmann will kick off her campaign in Waterloo, Iowa, her birthplace.

A poll released by The Des Moines Register over the weekend showed that Bachmann was a in statistical dead heat with front-runner Mitt Romney. Among likely caucus-goers, as many as 23 percent supported Romney, while Bachmann got a commendable 22 percent.

According to the latest Rasmussen poll of Republican primary voters, which was released last week, Bachmann had come second behind Romney, with 19 percent votes against Romney's 33 percent. Other contends like Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul were far behind.

Political observers say Bachmann will make a serious impact on the GOP nomination race and that she is billed to do well in Iowa, and possibly beyond.

Bachmann, unlike several of her rivals making appeals to the Tea Party movement, has the resources and fundraising potential to steer her campaign beyond the crucial early states of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, CNN reported.

However, it is also argued that Bachmann could suffer as the race gets into the final laps as the broad support base of the GOP will be looking for a candidate who will be able to defeat President Obama. It is pointed out that tough her support among core GOP voters is enormous, most voters don’t see her as the GOP candidate. A recent poll showed only 7 percent of GOP voters said she would win whereas 37 percent thought the same for Romney.

Bachmann is a three-term congresswoman from Minnesota, who was first elected in 2006. Her website says that prior to serving in the U.S. Congress, she served in the Minnesota State Senate. Before that, she spent five years as a federal tax litigation attorney, working on hundreds of civil and criminal cases.

Bachman is a central figure in the Tea Party movement. In July 2010 Bachmann hosted the first Tea Party Caucus meeting because she saw the need for Tea Partiers to have a listening ear in Congress.

Some of her policies and positions are controversial. Though he said last week he campaign was not personally against Obama, she had accused the president earlier of running a gangster government. Bachman is a fierce supporter of small government and she has championed tax reform.
Bachmann has said the Democrats' demand that the government debt ceiling should be raised is part of a scare tactic. Her position is that the country can steer clear of a debt default by paying only the interest while a consensus is created on how to cut down spending drastically.

The Congresswoman has been vastly successful in fundraising, a factor that would help her in the long and bruising primary battle. She had collected $13.5m during her House campaign in 2010, which was higher than the campaign kitty of any other Congress candidate.

Bachmann, who has an L.L.M. in Tax Law at the College of William and Mary, is married for more than thirty years and have five children.