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What a Headache: Rep. Michele Bachmann under Scrutiny for Migraines

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Is Michele Bachmann healthy enough to be president?

That is the question raised by a new Daily Caller story quoting several former aides to the Minnesota Congresswoman who say she is prone to "debilitating" migraine headaches that have landed her in the hospital and rendered her unable to perform her official duties at times.

“These episodes, say witnesses, occur once a week on average and can ‘incapacitate’ her for days at time.  On at least three occasions, Bachmann has landed in the hospital as a result,” writes the Daily Caller’s Jonathan Strong, quoting sources who refused to be identified.

“‘The migraines are so bad and so intense, she carries and takes all sorts of pills,” one of the unnamed sources told the Daily Caller.  “Prevention pills.  Pills during the migraine.  Pills after the migraine, to keep them under control.  She has to take these pills wherever she goes.”

A source who has worked closely with Bachmann over the past few years confirms to ABC News that Bachmann does get migraines that have put her in the hospital.  This source said that the “medication part of the story is way overblown,” but does acknowledge that it will be important for the Minnesota Congresswoman to come forward with her medical history.

The Bachmann camp's response to the story, according to the Daily Caller: "Alice Stewart, a spokeswoman for Bachmann, said 'she suffers from migraines and they’re under control with medicine.'  Stewart contested descriptions of the episodes as 'incapacitating' Bachmann but did not specify how the descriptions were wrong.  'The information you have is incorrect,' Stewart said.  She declined to discuss Bachmann’s hospital visits at all, saying, 'I’m not going to go into her medical history.'"

And for all the focus on next month’s Iowa Straw Poll and the likely entrance of Texas Gov. Rick Perry into the 2012 fray, this is an issue that could truly be a game changer. The health of a president is one of the most important criteria voters consider when it comes to electing the leader of the free world.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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