(Updated at 10:46 a.m. with comment from the White House)
Washington (CNN) - Republicans were out of the gate immediately following the release of the November unemployment figures Friday as the two top Republican leaders in the House jabbed Democrats and called for tax cut extensions.
Current House minority leader Rep. John Boehner, who will likely serve as House Speaker in the next Congress, said Democratic leaders are "wasting time with meaningless votes," and said not extending the Bush-era tax cuts will result in more jobs lost.
"Families and small businesses have had enough of politicians in Washington talking abut creating jobs while doing everything in their power to kill more jobs," Boehner said in a statement.
Rep. Eric Cantor, the current Republican whip who is set to hold the House majority leader position in the next Congress, echoed Boehner's sentiments and encouraged a vote to "stop all tax hikes."
"The lame-duck Congress should do the right thing and vote immediately to cut spending and stop all the tax hikes," Cantor said in a statement.
The House passed a bill Thursday extending the Bush tax cuts for those making $250,000 or less, but top Senate Democrats said a deal with the GOP over tax-related votes fell through Thursday night. Republicans have continued to lobby for an extension of all of the tax cuts, including for those making more than $250,000 a year.
A bill to extend benefits for the long-term unemployed recently failed in the House and Senate.
The economy created 39,000 jobs in November, the worst figure since September. Unemployment also rose from 9.6 percent to 9.8 percent, according to the government.
Austan Goolsbee, chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, said the new figures show the importance of extending tax cuts to middle class Americans and "unemployment insurance for those Americans who have lost their jobs."
"Failure to do this would jeopardize hundreds of thousands of additional jobs, and leave millions of Americans, who are out of work through no fault of their own, on their own," Goolsbee said in a statement.
Unemployment and the economy were the number one issues for voters in the 2010 elections, and according to recent polling remain at the top of the list. In a new CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll, only 18 percent of those surveyed were positive about the current economic conditions in the country.