Washington (CNN) - Republican leadership including House Speaker John Boehner and the Republican National Committee were quick to respond to Friday's release of the August jobs report. And 2012 GOP presidential contenders weren't far behind.
Just minutes after the Labor Department reported that employers added no jobs last month and the unemployment rate remained at 9.1 percent, RNC Chairman Reince Priebus put out a statement saying, "Today's unemployment numbers are another painful reminder that America still awaits economic leadership from President Obama. He spent his summer fundraising and golfing, promising to lay out a jobs plan only after his Martha's Vineyard vacation-all while nearly 14 million Americans remained jobless."
CNN’s Briana Keilar and Bob Costantini chat on the White House lawn about weak employment numbers and look ahead to the president’s address to Congress. Plus, Norm Ornstein considers what Mr. Obama must get through to the American people, if not Congress.
Priebus also called on the president to change course when he gives a major address on jobs next Thursday in a speech before Congress.
"The president needs the courage to admit his regulatory regime is the biggest road block to job creation. America's job creators cannot hire workers while handcuffed by regulations, crushed by mandates and threatened with taxes. If the president refuses to change course, America's unemployed with be the victims of his failure," adds Priebus.
Boehner released a statement saying he looked forward to hearing the president's ideas on boosting job creation.
“Private-sector job growth continues to be undermined by the triple threat of higher taxes, more failed ‘stimulus’ spending, and excessive federal regulations," he said.
“President Obama is slated to address Congress next week and I look forward to hearing his ideas to bolster private-sector job creation. The American people are still asking, ‘Where are the jobs?’"
And Mitt Romney appeared to be the first Republican presidential candidate to react to the jobs numbers.
In a statement put out 15 minutes after the jobs report was released, the former Massachusetts governor, who's making his second bid for the White House, called the report "unacceptable" and said it's "further proof that President Obama has failed."
Minutes later, another GOP White House hopeful, Jon Huntsman, reacted.
"Two days after I offered a plan with serious solutions that would create jobs and get our economy going, we learn of yet another month with zero job growth," said the former Utah governor and former U.S. ambassador to China.
"There is no clearer sign that the President has failed and the theatrics around his far-too-late jobs speech demonstrate that he has no real plan to change course. In a country with 307 million people, zero job growth is unfathomable. It's time for America to compete again and it's time for a new president."
Huntsman spelled out his jobs plan Wednesday in a speech in New Hampshire. Late Thursday night, the Wall Street Journal, in an editorial, praised Huntsman's proposal. The Journal is very influential among fiscal conservatives.
Romney doesn't formally spell out his plan to create jobs until Tuesday in Nevada, two days before the president speaks about job creation in an address to Congress. But he gave a preview of his speech Friday morning, when he addressed the Republican National Hispanic Assembly in Tampa, Florida, saying, "I will make business taxes competitive with other nations, eliminate burdensome regulations and bureaucracy, and support America's workers instead of its union bosses."
About an hour after the release of the jobs report, Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann put out a statement.
"Mr. President – we gave you $2.4 trillion in new spending and the American people got nothing in return. Today's jobs report showing that the economy created no jobs in the last month and unemployment at 9.1 percent is further evidence that President Obama's failed economic policies are not working and have completely stalled job growth," said the congresswoman, who is also running for the GOP presidential nomination.
Also criticizing the president was former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania. The GOP White House candidate said, "This morning's jobs report is another sad sign that President Obama's economic policies would need to improve dramatically to even be described as incompetent."
Santorum released his jobs plan in July.
Businessman Herman Cain also decried the dismal report saying, "Sadly, the fact that zero jobs were created last month is only fitting for this administration, which is led by a President with zero leadership, zero plans, zero results and zero understanding of basic economics. And the American people are worse off because of it," in a statement.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry, the front-runner in the most recent national polls in the battle for the GOP nomination, put out a statement that touted job growth in his state.
"President Obama's job-killing polices continue to wreak havoc on the American economy. The poor national jobs picture stands in stark contrast to Texas' pro-jobs, limited government policies which helped make us the top job-producing state in the nation," said Perry.
"Our country cannot afford four more years of economic misery, and I will continue to travel the county talking about ways to get American working again."
Former House Speaker and current GOP presidential candidate Newt Gingrich weighed in on the jobs report in an e-mail sent to supporters.
"Stagnant economic growth is the inevitable result of President Obama's commitment to class warfare and bureaucratic socialism," Gingrich said.
"The president routinely demonizes successful Americans, arguing they need to be punished with higher taxes. Is it any wonder that entrepreneurs are hesitant to invest, create new wealth and jobs?"