During an appearance on Fox News Thursday, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Palwenty said he should have answered a direct question posed to him in Monday’s debate about former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney’s involvement in government-run health care.
“I should have been more clear.I should have made the point that he was involved in developing it, he really laid the groundwork for ObamaCare and continues to this day to defend it,” said Pawlenty.
Critics blasted Pawlenty for backing down from criticism of Romney at the debate, a day after Pawlenty coined the phrase “ObamneyCare” to link Romney with the Democratic-led health care bill.
In the Fox News interview, Pawlenty suggested Romney would have a difficult time representing Republicans in a presidential race because of the health care issue.
“I don’t think you can prosecute the political case against President Obama if you are a co-conspirator in one of the main charges against the President on a political level. And so it really puts our nominee if that’s who it turns out to be in a very difficult spot. And I understand that Governor Romney argument that it is different at the state level. When you look at these two plans with only modest variations they are very similar and nearly identical,” said Pawlenty.