MIAMI -- Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann’s campaign for president may be over, but top aides are still rushing to her defense.
Bachmann’s former campaign manager, Keith Nahigian, directed a lawyer Friday to write South Carolina radio stations to ask them to stop playing an advertisement he says is funded by the group Winning our Future, a super PAC supporting Newt Gingrich.
Nahigian says the ad, apparently called "Bachmann," uses archival tape of the former candidate praising Gingrich in order to create the impression she's endorsing him. (Winning our Future did not immediately respond to an email from NBC News. The ad does not seem to be available online.)
According to a transcript provided by Nahigian, Bachmann says of Gingrich's time as speaker of the House, “He made an indelible mark that literally changed the United States,” adding, “he was almost better known than our president during those years.”
A narrator says: “Michele Bachmann is right. Newt helped change history once. He can do it again.”
Nahigian says the audio dates to the 2008 Republican National Convention, in St. Paul. Bachmann, running for re-election in her nearby district, invited Gingrich to speak at a fundraiser for her campaign.
“Congresswoman Bachman has not endorsed Speaker Gingrich, nor any other candidate for the Presidency,” the letter from Bachmann's lawyer reads. “Your station must fulfill its responsibility to operate in the public interest and cease airing [Winning our Future’s] radio advertisement immediately.”
The Bachmann campaign ground to a halt a little more than a week ago. Nahigian, back from a brief vacation, calls this brewing fight “small little stuff,” though “ironic."
“The words that came out of her mouth [at the 2008 event] were written by his staff, of how to introduce him,” Nahigian says, of Gingrich. “They’re not even her own thoughts.”