Washington (CNN) - Both the presumptive GOP presidential nominee and the chairman of the Republican National Committee were quick to use April's unemployment numbers to criticize President Barack Obama's job on creating jobs.
"It's a terrible and very disappointing report this morning. Clearly the American people are wondering why this recovery isn't happening faster, what's taking years and years for the recovery to occur. And we seem to be slowing down, not speeding up. This is not progress," Mitt Romney said Friday in an interview on Fox News.
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“This is very, very disappointing. A lot of American people are having difficult times, and this is not good news this morning," added the former Massachusetts governor, who argued the reason the rate dropped was due to more people leaving the workforce.
Romney's comments came just a few minutes after the Labor Department reported that the nation's unemployment level edged down from 8.2% in March to 8.1% in April.
The Labor Department also reported that the number of jobs rose by 115,000, lower than many economists had predicted. According to the report, 342,000 workers dropped out of the labor force, with the labor force participation rate, now at 63.6%, at its lowest level since 1981.
The RNC chairman was also quick to react to the jobs report.
"President Obama's desperate hype-and-blame campaign will try to spin today's anemic jobs report six ways to Sunday, but the facts remain clear: too many Americans have been unemployed for far too long. For millions, the economy is simply not working," said RNC Chairman Reince Priebus, in a statement that used the party committee's new "Hype and Blame" slogan.
"Three years ago, President Obama vowed to fix the economy in three years and to hold himself accountable to his record. Today's numbers remind us that he has failed to live up those promises, and he has no one to blame but himself. We must change course in November to ensure our children have the prosperous future they deserve," added Priebus, in his statement.
The White House did not put out an instant reaction to the jobs numbers. About an hour after the report's release, they did put out a statement.
"Today's employment report provides further evidence that the economy is continuing to heal from the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, but much more remains to be done to repair the damage caused by the financial crisis and the deep recession. It is critical that we continue the economic policies that are helping us dig our way out of the deep hole that was caused by the severe recession that began at the end of 2007," said Alan Krueger, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers.
The president is expected to speak about the unemployment report later Friday morning at an event on student loans in Northern Virginia.
The economy remains the top issue on the minds of Americans and jobs remains the top economic issue. A CNN/ORC International poll conducted last month indicated that Americans were split on which candidate could best jumpstart the economy, with 44% saying Obama would be more likely to get the economy moving and 42% saying that Romney would do a better job to stimulate the economy.