Charlotte, North Carolina (CNN) - House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, no stranger to receiving or giving political criticism, quickly took aim at major Republican policies Monday while addressing her home state's delegation at event ahead of the Democratic National Convention.
"Destruction is (the GOP's) political philosophy. It's not that they have a better idea," she told the California crowd at a breakfast in Charlotte, North Carolina. "But doing nothing is their philosophy. They do not believe in a public role."
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Chief among the issues on her list was a Republican proposal to replace Medicare with a system that offers subsidies to seniors. She said Democrats "reject" the so called Ryan plan, a proposal authored by GOP vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan. The plan, which is part of a larger budget bill, was passed by the House this year but has not moved in the Senate.
In the face of Democratic attacks in recent weeks, Ryan has defended the plan as one that would extend benefits to seniors and create a more lasting, less costly system. The central idea of the proposal calls for the government to give seniors credit to purchase their own insurance. The issue was brought to the forefront in the presidential election when Mitt Romney named Ryan as his running mate.
Pelosi, however, called the plan "a trick to end Medicare" and argued the proposal offers large tax breaks in exchange for making seniors pay more for insurance.
"It's wrong. It's morally wrong. It's economically wrong," Pelosi said. "To vote for Medicare, vote Democratic."
Pelosi also pointed to what she labeled "extremism" in the Republican Party, namely citing Republican opposition to an Obama administration policy that earlier called for religiously-affiliated institutions to include contraception coverage in their health care plans. After fierce resistance from religious communities and Republicans, the administration amended the policy. She argued it was one more example of what Democrats have described as a GOP-fueled war against women.
The congresswoman, a fund-raising giant who's celebrating her 25th year in Congress this year, also cried foul on outside spending by conservative groups in elections this year. Faulting the Supreme Court decision that paved the way for unlimited super PAC spending, Pelosi said the results have amounted to a system that is "suffocating the airwaves in special interest money" and "poisoning the debate."
Bolstering her point, she said democracy was "a government of many, not the government of money."
Democrats are not immune to outside spending, however. President Barack Obama's re-election in February said it began pushing top Democratic donors to contribute to Priorities USA Action, a super PAC group supportive of the president.
Pelosi is scheduled to address the entire convention at the Time Warner Cable arena this week.