Washington (CNN) – Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich will kick off a series of town halls on jobs next month, one day before President Barack Obama holds a jobs forum at the White House.
Gingrich's American Solutions organization announced Monday that Gingrich will hold what it calls a "real jobs summit" in Cincinnati, Ohio, followed by another the next day in Jackson, Mississippi. That's the same day Obama holds his forum in Washington.
The president announced on November 12 that his forum will include representatives from business, organized labor, and academia, among other sectors.
The nation's unemployment rate now stands at 10.2 percent, the highest level in more than a quarter century.
"Our economy's growing again, for the first time in more than a year, and we know that economic growth is a prerequisite for job growth," Obama said Monday, after meeting with his cabinet. "But having said that, what I emphasize today is we cannot sit back and be satisfied, given the extraordinarily high unemployment levels that we've seen."
But Gingrich takes issue with Obama's economic programs.
"President Obama's upcoming 'Jobs Summit' in Washington, DC is an acknowledgment that the big government stimulus package failed to create jobs. For an administration that is actively promoting job-killing health care, energy, and big labor legislation, holding a 'Jobs Summit' is deceiving political theater in the midst of millions of Americans struggling to find work," the possible 2012 GOP presidential hopeful said in a statement.
"Beginning in Cincinnati, we will be traveling the country talking to small business owners and entrepreneurs – the engines of growth in our economy – to get their ideas on how to create jobs and grow the economy," added Gingrich.
American Solutions spokesman Dan Kotman said additional town halls will be announced next year.
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