ABC News' Matthew Jaffe reports:
Ahead of tomorrow's GOP debate in New Hampshire, Tim Pawlenty today launched his strongest attack yet at rival Mitt Romney in unveiling a new term: "ObamneyCare."
Appearing on FOX News Sunday, Pawlenty said, "President Obama said that he designed ObamaCare after RomneyCare, and basically made it ObamneyCare. We now have essentially the same features. The President's own words is that he patterned in large measure ObamaCare after what happened in Massachusetts. What I don't understand is they both continue to defend it."
"I took a different approach in Minnesota," Pawlenty continued. "We did market based health care reforms trying to encourage consumers with good information to make good decisions and financial incentives in a market place. But I strongly oppose the individual mandate at any level. I am one of the parties in the lawsuit in Florida trying to get it declared unconstitutional. I think it is a dramatic overreach by government forcing a consumer to buy a good or service because of a government edict or mandate. I think it is a dramatic overreach. I don't like that approach under Obamacare and I have been a strong critic of it. I think we should repeal ObamaCare in its entirety."
Asked by Chris Wallace about the economic plan he outlined last Tuesday in Chicago, Pawlenty acknowledged that his proposal — which assumes five percent GDP growth for the next decade — is "a stretch" and "aspirational."
"This is aspirational. It's a big goal. It's a stretch goal," he said.
"Is this aggressive and bold? Absolutely," he added. "But I don't buy into the declinist view and attitude of President Obama that we're going to settle for anemic growth or average growth."