When you go after Bachmann, you shouldn't just go after her failure to influence policy during her time in Congress. You should go after how she turned her failure into self-promotion even as policy got worse. This works best if you first set up a vivid narrative of doing the things Bachmann only talks about. For instance:
"When the Democrats and some Republicans in the state legislature sent me big spending bills, I vetoed then. And those vetoes stuck. And spending went down. When the Democrats shut down the government to get me to agree to higher taxes, I said no. The government got back to work and taxes stayed the same. When the transit union struck for higher benefits, we didn't give in. We won one for the taxpayers of Minnesota. That was real money. Those were real wins for the taxpayers. That was real limited government.
"So let's look at what Representative Bachmann did in Washington. She has a press conference. TARP passes. She gives some speeches. The Obama stimulus passes. She sends out some fundraising letters. Obamacare passes. She announces she is running for President and sends out some more fundraising letters. The debt ceiling raises. This is a disastrous record for the American people. Representative Bachmann has gotten herself a lot of television time, but we've added trillions to the deficit. This is a choice between real limited government where spending goes down, and employment goes up, and show biz limited government where we get big talk as we hurtle towards more and more spending and eventual bankruptcy."
Yeah, I know it isn't really fair, but it is more connected to reality than Pawlenty's economic growth targets.
h/t Ramesh Ponnuru, who made the Pawlenty case better than Pawlenty ever has.