Wolfeboro, New Hampshire (CNN) – A jobs report showing lukewarm hiring in June is a "kick in the gut" to American workers, presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney said in New Hampshire Friday.
"It's consistent with what I've heard as I've gone across the country and met with families in their homes, in cafes and restaurants and in break rooms," Romney said. "American families are struggling. There's a lot of misery in America today, and these numbers understate what people are feeling and the amount of pain which is occurring in middle class America."
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Romney made remarks and took some reporter questions at Bradley's Hardware in downtown Wolfeboro, New Hampshire, about a mile and a half from the Romney family's lakefront home. The candidate, along with his large extended family, has spent the last week there on vacation.
In his comments, Romney slammed President Barack Obama, his opponent for the White House, as not doing enough to foster growth and encourage employers to hire workers.
"The highest corporate tax rates in the world do not create jobs," Romney said. "Highest regulatory burdens in our nation's history - those do not create jobs. Trade policies that have not opened up new markets for American goods, particularly in Latin America, those don't create new jobs. Failing to effectively crack down on China for cheating and stealing American jobs, that has not helped."
"The president's policies have not gotten America working again, and the president's going to have to stand up and take responsibility for it," Romney continued.
Obama, who is traveling on a bus tour through the Rust Belt, was expected to react to Friday's jobs numbers at his first stop in Ohio. Romney mentioned the tour, asking, "How do you go across Pennsylvania and Ohio and not talk about being serious about creating jobs through manufacturing policies that make America more attractive for investment and growth?"
Romney said as president, he would use different strategies to help remedy the dire economic straits many Americans face.
"It doesn't have to be this way," Romney said. "The president doesn't have a plan. He hasn't proposed any new ideas to get the economy going. Just the same old ideas of the past that have failed. I have a plan. My plan calls for action that will get America working again and create good jobs, both near term and long term."
Romney emerged from his campaign break on July 4th to march in an Independence Day parade, but has otherwise held no public events. Romney's son Tagg accompanied his father to the hardware store for his statement.
Bradley's Hardware, which has stood on Railroad Avenue in Wolfeboro since 1950, is a family owned business that employs twelve people.
Answering a question from a reporter about taking a vacation during the heat of the campaign, Romney responded that he wanted more Americans to be able to take breaks.
"I'm delighted to be able to take a vacation with my family," Romney said. "I think all Americans appreciate the memories that they have with their children and their grandchildren. I hope that more Americans are able to take vacations, and if I'm president of the United States, I'm going to work very hard to make sure we have good jobs for all Americans who want good jobs, and as part of a good job the capacity to take a vacation now and then with their loved ones."
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