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Florida Dems chair Rod Smith lays into Tim Pawlenty

With GOP presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty set to fundraise in Florida next, Democratic Party Chair Rod Smith trashed the former Minnesota governor for raising taxes in that state and signing the "Cut, Cap and Balance" pledge.

"This legislation preserves tax cuts for the rich, subsidies for oil companies and special tax deals for items like corporate jets," Smith said.

He also criticized the proposal for holding "America’s debt hostage to the Republican’s fiscal agenda by requiring both houses of Congress pass a balanced budget amendment before the debt limit can be raised."

"We don’t need to amend the Constitution of the United States to take care of getting our fiscal house in order. We simply need to have leadership willing to compromise," Smith said.

Smith reiterated the characterization of the proposal as "The Ryan plan on steroids," and criticized it for cuts to energy, education, health care, seniors and people with disabilities. 

When Pawlenty was governor, Smith said, taxes increased for the bottom 90 percent of Minnesota residents while taxes for the upper 10 percent went down.

"When he had a chance to lead he placed the burden on middle class families," smith said. "Former Gov. Tim Pawlenty has proven he didn’t work for Minnesota's working families, and he won't work for America's working families."