The conventional wisdom is Mitt Romney would love to face off against Michelle Bachmann for the GOP nomination in 2012. The converse might be true as well.
The New Republic's Jonathan Chait says Bachmann probably wants a one-on-one fight with Romney for a number of reasons.
Many reporters have noted that a one-on-one matchup between Romney and Bachmann is Romney's dream scenario. That's true -- it's his best chance to have the establishment rally behind him. I haven't seen them mention that it's also Bachmann's dream scenario -- she gets to face off against an establishment candidate totally unacceptable to large segments of the party base.
Now, the far greater danger to Bachmann is that she faces off against somebody other than Romney -- say, Rick Perry, or possibly even Paul Ryan -- who can appeal to right-wingers and party elites as well. A Perry run seems highly likely and could easily reorder the race. At the same time, he might not run, or he might flop. Meanwhile, the assumption that Bachmann will fizzle out after Iowa seems far, far too pat.