New Republican Presidential candidate Michele Bachmann has been slapped with a cease and desist order after the politician used Tom Petty’s iconic song “American Girl” during a campaign rally. Not the first time the Heartbreaker refused to let a nominee use his music, Petty previously filed a similar motion after George W. Bush commandeered “Won’t Back Down” for his 2000 Presidential campaign.

According to Rolling Stone, there’s been no formal response yet from Team Bachmann, but it would be absurd to think the Minnesota Congresswoman would continue blaring “American Girl” after a public request not to. Tom Petty is well within his right to ask Michele Bachmann not to use his music as the background of her campaign. A noted liberal, he clearly holds views she does not share. Whether intended or not, the usage of his songs does at least subconsciously convey he’s supporting what she’s saying. Or does it?

I’d like to think the average person was capable enough to draw the line between candidate and background score. Had Bruce Springsteen not gotten so hot and bothered over the usage of “Born In The USA” in the 1980s, I probably still would have assumed he didn’t vote for Reagan. Had Jackson Browne not sued John McCain, I still would have assumed he wasn’t casting a Republican ballot. In my mind, background songs have always just sort of been happenstance, but maybe it really does matter more than I'm giving it credit for. Maybe I'd feel differently if Sarah Palin plucked out quotes from my articles and put 'em on campaign posters.

Are cease and desist letters directed toward candidates completely justified or a bit reactionary and petty? Vote in the poll below and let me know what you think…

Should Rock Stars Care If Politicians Use Their Music?

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