Republican presidential candidate and Minnesota congresswoman Michele Bachmann claims that waterboarding isn’t torture, but says it would be “absurd” to find out for herself.
Rep. Bachmann has twice supported waterboarding, during the recent GOP debate and in an interview with Fox News.
In an interview this week, the Des Moines Register editorial board asked Rep. Bachmann about the practice, which is deemed "torture" by international law.
“Is it uncomfortable?” Rep. Bachmann asked. “Yes, it’s uncomfortable, but I am more concerned that we would prevent aircraft from going into the Twin Towers, taking them down, and taking out 3,000 innocent American lives, than I am about the comfort level of a terrorist, and what that means for them.”
“Because again, this is done under monitored conditions, where – is it uncomfortable? Yes, I don’t deny that it’s uncomfortable. But a person is not going to lose their life, nor will they be permanently injured or permanently impaired by this. And it’s done on very unique, strict circumstances.”
“You say it’s being done on terrorists, but actually it’s being done as an interrogation technique to determine who are terrorists,” one editorial board member said off-camera. “These people have not been tried. … If you think it’s not that bad, would you ever willingly submit to it just to see what it’s like?”
“Well, I think it would be absurd to have the president of the United States submit themselves to waterboarding,” said Rep. Bachmann, who is not president. “There are those that have submitted themselves to it so that they can talk about it and speak about it afterwards.”