At a campaign stop in Columbus, Ohio, today, Rick Santorum derided President Obama's "agenda," telling the crowd, "It’s not about your quality of life. It’s not about your job. It’s about some phony ideal, some phony theology. Oh, not a theology based on the Bible, a different theology. But no less a theology,” according to The New York Times' The Caucus blog.

Questioned later by reporters, Santorum was asked if he felt Obama was less of a Christian than he was, for, as Santorum put it in his speech, "imposing his values" on the church. Santorum backtracked a little, saying, "No one’s suggesting that. Obviously, as we all know in the Christian church there are a lot of different stripes of Christianity. I’m just saying he’s imposing his values on the church, and I think that’s wrong...If the President says he’s a Christian, he’s a Christian.” The Times points out that at another recent campaign stop, Santorum made no attempt to correct a woman who stated into a microphone that the president was a practicing Muslim

The Obama campaign was quick to respond:

“This is just the latest low in a Republican primary campaign that has been fueled by distortions, ugliness, and searing pessimism and negativity,” Ben LaBolt, an Obama spokesman, said in an e-mailed statement. He also described Mr. Santorum’s comments as “a stark contrast with the president, who is focused every day on creating jobs and restoring economic security for the middle class.”

Santorum, who is currently enjoying a surge in popularity against front-runner Mitt Romney, has been more of a target lately for the Obama re-election campaign, the AP reports. The Chicago-based organization has begun "combing through the former Pennsylvania senator's background" looking for weaknesses, and sent an email this week to Obama's Pennsylvania supporters "asking for material that could be used against Santorum in upcoming speeches and ads."

"I mean, who'd have guessed?" Obama's Pennsylvania campaign director, Bill Hyers, asked in an email to supporters. He said it's up to Pennsylvania to make sure the rest of the country "sees Rick Santorum's true colors. Here's someone ... whose extreme-right social views are as out of touch as they are memorable," Hyers wrote.