- Associated Press - Wednesday, June 22, 2011

WASHINGTON (AP) — Newly declared Republican presidential candidate JonHuntsman Jr. said on Wednesday that the Obama administration’s pace of troop drawdown in Afghanistan is too slow.

Mr. Huntsman told NBC’s “Today” show, “What we need now is a healthy dose of nation-building here at home.” Mr. Huntsman, a former Utah governor, also said, “We can probably be a little more aggressive” about withdrawing American forces from Afghanistan. President Obama gives a prime-time speech Wednesday night on his new Afghan war policy.

Mr. Huntsman was Mr. Obama’s ambassador to China. He has said he respects Mr. Obama but that the two have different visions about how to make America stronger.

Mr. Huntsman said Tuesday there’s “no real sign of recovery” in the economy and said the country must “grow out of the hole we’re in.” He said raising taxes should be “off the table.”

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