WASHINGTON - Republican US Representative Michele Bachmann, a former White House hopeful and a favorite of the conservative Tea Party movement, has a new political option: she can run for office in Switzerland.

Bachmann, whose husband is Swiss, recently activated her right to become a dual US-Swiss citizen along with three of their five children.

"Congresswoman Bachmann's husband is of Swiss descent so she has been eligible for dual-citizenship since they got married in 1978," said Bachmann's press secretary Becky Rogness. "However, recently some of their children wanted to exercise their eligibility for dual-citizenship so they went through the process as a family."

A spokesman at the Swiss embassy said Bachmann had activated that citizenship in March.

In an interview with Swiss television, Bachmann - who pulled out of the race in January for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination - laughed when asked if she would run for office in Switzerland.

"There's a lot of competition ... and it would be very stiff because they are very good," she said.

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