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Bachmann takes veiled shot at 'frugal socialist' Romney, 'confused' on core beliefs

WASHINGTON --  Without calling GOP frontrunner Mitt Romney or any of her other rivals by name, Republican presidential candidate Rep. Michele Bachmann on Monday described others in the GOP field as "frugal socialists," adding that some are "confused" about their core beliefs on abortion, same sex marriage, and the "urgency" of repealing the Obama-passed health care law. 

"Unfortunately for too many Republicans, they also aspire to be frugal socialists," Bachmann said in an address at the Family Research Council headquarters in Washington D.C., adding that "some" of the GOP candidates tolerate "socialized" medicine because of a flawed understanding of government that sheers too closely to the president's. 

"We cannot preserve liberty for ourselves and our posterity if the choice in next November is between a frugal socialist and an out-of-control socialist," she said in a clear but unnamed reference to Romney. 

Pressed by a reporter to identify exactly at whom she was leveling her charge, Bachmann demurred, replying against a soundtrack of giggles in the room: "You see, that's part of the puzzle that you figure out." 

In an address heavily focused on the proper role of the federal government, Bachmann listed what she believes are cracks in the conservative philosophies of others in the presidential contest, labeling as "naive" those who would use executive orders to roll back the health are law (which Gov. Rick Perry has proposed), and pledging that there will be no "policy surprises" from her campaign (referencing flip-flops from the likes of Romney and Herman Cain.)  

"I am far from a perfect person, but I know who I am and I will never deviate from the principles that I have fought for all of my life," she said. 

Zeroing in on the issue of abortion rights, she also took anonymous aim at rivals Romney and Cain, whose past statements on the issue have been muddled in the eyes of some social conservatives.

"Some Republican candidates seem confused about what it means to be 100 percent pro-life," she said. "I am both personally and publicly pro-life and our candidate has to do more than just check the box on the issue of life." 

While aiming most of her criticisms against the GOP rivals she refused to name, Bachmann also swiped at the current president, linking his political philosophy to the ongoing nationwide protest movement against the top percentage point of the nation's wealthy. 

"He has been willing to engage during his presidency in a massive redistribution of wealth and in the politics of an 'Occupy Wall Street' envy to achieve his purposes," Bachmann said. 

The Minnesota congresswoman charged that Obama's beliefs run counter to a basic tenet of Christianity. "The 10th Commandment teaches those shall not covet thy neighbor's goods," she said. "It's time to act on this self-evident truth." 

She also offered particularly harsh words for the United Nations, which she called a "threat to the American family" due to its international standards for children's rights, and she called the threat of the institution of Sharia Law in the United States "an issue that Americans are rightly concerned about." 

Bachmann travels today to South Carolina, where she will campaign before Wednesday's CNBC debate in Rochester, MI. 

NBC's Jamie Novogrod contributed.