WASHINGTON — Former governor Mitt Romney, in a new introduction to his book, strongly criticizes President Obama, writing that "my worst fears about the president have come true" and that his policies "are smothering the American dream."
"Rather than focusing his energy and political capital on solving the economic crisis, he exploited it to promote his extreme liberal agenda," Romney writes in the new paperback version of "No Apology," according to excerpts provided to the Boston Globe.
"We need a U-turn from the policies of the past few years," he adds.
Romney is expected to expound on such a line of attack in a round of radio and television interviews Tuesday and Wednesday. Ostensibly, the interviews are part of a media tour for the paperback version of his book, but with just over a year before GOP primary voters go to the polls, interviewers are likely to ask Romney about his presidential ambitions.
In the book's new introduction, Romney gives an apparent nod to the Tea Party movement, criticizing Democrats in sharp populist language for pushing a greater role for government.
"They simply do not believe in America as it was shaped by the Founders," he writes. "They do not believe that the principles and values that made America a great nation still apply."
"Like the monarch the revolutionaries rejected, they have no limit on the amount they would tax the people and their enterprises," he adds. "Rather than admire the heritage of peaceful assembly and petition, they ridicule and demean assemblies of ordinary citizens who protest their grand health care plans, takeovers, and bailouts."
Romney also strongly criticizes the president's health care law, which is bound to become a sticky argument, since the national plan was largely based on the one Romney steered to passage in Massachusetts.
"They have enacted 2,000 pages of health care legislation, and while the politicians did not take the time to read it before they voted, small businesses will have no choice but to read and comply with every one of its new mandates and provisions," Romney writes.
The two-day media tour begins Tuesday with an interview on ABC's "Good Morning America," followed by sitting on the couch with the women of "The View."
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He'll also tape a segment reading the "Top 10" list with CBS's David Letterman. To round it out, Tuesday night he will be on the new CNN show hosted by Piers Morgan, a talk show in the slot that used to be "Larry King Live."
On Wednesday, Romney is planning to go on a series of conservative radio shows hosted by Don Imus, Laura Ingraham, and Hugh Hewitt.
Meanwhile, Romney raised nearly $175,000 in the final five weeks of 2010 and starts out this year with $1.4 million in the bank, according to newly filed campaign disclosure forms.
His political action committee — called the Free and Strong America PAC — begins 2011 with more than any other prospective presidential candidate.