In the first fundraising quarter of 2011, Michelle Bachmann brought in a combined $2.2 million between her Congressional re-election campaign and her leadership PAC. Mitt Romney, by comparison, only pulled in $1.9 million.

Bachmann was also the top fundraiser of any Congressional candidate in the country last cycle, raising $13.5 million.

While Mitt has been holding back his fundraising to allow for a headline-setting haul for the second quarter, when he is expected to announced his Presidential campaign, the fact that Bachmann outraised him is “sure to roil the early presidential-watching, as the Minnesota congresswoman gears up for a likely run for the White House in 2012,” according to Politico. 

Bachmann, as we pointed out a week before Pols and HuffPo got around to reporting on it, was the runner-up at the straw poll at the Centennial dinner, a fundraiser for the Colorado Republican Party.

As Politico mentioned, Bachmann is beginning to get a lot more attention in the conservative grassroots community now that it appears Sarah Palin is less likely to run.

This leads us to wonder — will Bachmann be the choice of the grassroots in the 2012 Presidential primary?

One potential curveball to consider as longshot presidential aspirants jockey to become the grassroots choice: freshman Senator Rand Paul made the trek to Iowa this weekend.

Maybe he's hoping that for the second cycle in a row, the American people are primed for a new face in the form of a freshman Senator, only this time a Republican.