August 3rd, 2012
01:05 PM ET
2 years ago

Obama touts job record, says more remains to be done

(CNN) - President Barack Obama touted overall job creation numbers from his time in office on Friday morning, hours after a jobs report brought mixed news on the nation's employment picture. He also urged Republicans in Congress to pass a tax measure which remains a rift between the two parties.

Private sector hiring was up in July, with the economy creating a net 163,000 jobs, but the unemployment rate also increased from 8.2% to 8.3%, according to the Labor Department's report.

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Obama touted the private sector portion of the report, which showed 172,000 new jobs. The public sector lost some 9,000 jobs.

"That means that we've now created 4.5 million new jobs over the last 29 months, and 1.1 million new jobs so far this year," Obama said in remarks in Washington at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building. "Those are our neighbors and family members finding work and the security that comes with work.

But Obama is still 316,000 jobs away from being a net job creator in office - as 4.316 million jobs were lost in his first 13 months in office, and 4 million jobs have been added since then.

"We've got more work to do on their behalf, not only to reclaim all the jobs that were lost during the recession, but also to reclaim the kind of financial security that too many, Americans have felt was slipping away from them for too long," he said of the unemployed. "And we knew when I started in this job that this was going to take some time. We haven't had to come back from an economic crisis this deep or this painful since the 1930s."

At a press conference following the president's remarks - and at his own concurrent event - presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney said "the president's policies are to blame for not having gotten the economy back on track."

"It's very clear the president's policies have not worked the way the said they would," he told reporters in Las Vegas, Nevada. "I think it's an extraordinary failure of policy, a failure of leadership, and I think it's a moral failure for a country as successful and prosperous as our own to go now four years in a mode which feels to many people like a recession."

At his event, Romney said the report was "another hammer blow to the struggling middle class families of America."

Obama's remarks took place at an official, rather than campaign, event, and he declined to specifically name Romney, but he did blast "the policies that helped to create this mess in the first place."

The president then turned his focus to Republicans in Congress, who he said "voted to hold these middle-class tax cuts hostage unless we also spend a trillion dollars over the next decade on tax breaks for the wealthiest 2 percent of Americans."

Republicans and Democrats differ on extending the Bush-era tax breaks, with Republicans generally supportive of extending the cuts on income of all levels and Democrats generally favoring an extension on income below a certain threshold, such as the $250,000 number advanced by Obama.

"I just think we've got our priorities skewed if the notion is that we give tax breaks to folks who don't need them and to help pay for that we tax folks who are already struggling to get by. That's
not how you grow an economy," Obama said. "You grow an economy from the middle out and from the bottom up. And the kind of approach that the House Republicans are talking about is bad for our families and it's bad for our economy."

The break, Obama said, would still result in a break for the wealthy - on the first $250,000 of their earnings.

But while Republicans and Democrats sort out their differences on breaks for the rest of wealthy individuals' income, Obama repeated his call for Congress to act soon - well before what some call the "fiscal cliff" at years' end.

"There's no reason to wait," Obama said. "There's no reason to make families and small businesses anxious just so one party can score political points. Let's go ahead and give them that guarantee now that their taxes won't go up next year."

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Filed under: 2012 • Jobs • Mitt Romney • President Obama
soundoff (76 Responses)
  1. Name tay

    So with a stubborn Congress unwilling to give Obama's administration any type of support with job creation or suitable tax bills he has lost only 316000 jobs in this economy. Take that gop and mitt. Maybe we would be in the positive in regards to job creation with just a little bit of congressional support instead of legislating to to try to win the potus position.

    August 3, 2012 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  2. Randy

    @carolyn, what good work? Are you a fool and just can't see what this incompetent man is doing to our once great nation. Read my earlier post for additional information, but before you do, please set the Kool-Aid down.

    August 3, 2012 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  3. g

    the republican war economy is a loser every time they use it,its the 21century the 20 century is gone

    August 3, 2012 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  4. Georgie

    Thank God for President Obama!, ...

    August 3, 2012 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  5. Dale

    Kind of a "Things could be worse" view of the jobs report.
    Mr President. You have no clothes.

    August 3, 2012 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  6. Time for a real change!

    Only Obama would tout a terrible record on jobs. Bad is now good? No wonder times are tough!

    August 3, 2012 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  7. winky

    Good job president of the free world most of us are with you! The republicans hate those jobs numbers they want you to fail but you haven't failed in my eyes the republican house has failed!

    August 3, 2012 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  8. Rick in OP

    We need 150,000 jobs per month just to keep up with the increase in population. The unemployment rate has increased for the second month in a row, now at 8.3%. The unemployment rate in June 2012 was at 8.1%. This is not a good report.

    August 3, 2012 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  9. t

    Laughable...

    August 3, 2012 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  10. SaltyBob

    GOP/Republicans. = Death of America you people have done enough damage why dont you go grab your white sheets and burnning crosses and head for what ever strech of land that will take you. I have had enough of the rights ignorance cant belive people are this Fu****g St***d. GOP= drill baby Drill = s;ow death of the planet. GOP = take from the poor give to the rich. GOP = Cant afford health care die. GOP = your a woman oh well your gona do it our way, Obama/Biden 2012

    August 3, 2012 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  11. Aiden

    Obama touts his job record? Hilarious. He greets every day to campaign and see if he can leave us in worse shape than any President in modern history.

    August 3, 2012 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  12. Fair is Fair

    Beverly pondered:

    "Does "freedom" buy your groceries?"
    -------
    Nope. And since Obama got into office, my paycheck doesn't buy my groceries (or gas, or clothes) either. Maybe it's time just to give up and go on the dole. Sure beats the heck out of getting up and going to work every day.

    P.S. your rant was very complete – included every DNC talking point and managed to throw "racist" in as well. You should be so proud.

    August 3, 2012 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  13. NameKen

    @jon It amazing to me how so many people bring up Reagan as if he was the greatest POTUS ever! Regan raised taxes! Pushed trickle down economics one could say he was the father of it! And his polcies sent us into a ression! It was Clinton that turned it around. Don't just listen to Fox news do some research! Reagan wasn't loosing 750,000 jobs a month when he came into office. You undervalue just haw bad things were when Obama took office! Regan came into office behind Carter following up the energy crises of the 70's. If you REALLY think MITT will create 12 million jobs by giving the Top 5% a 5 trillion dollar tax break! I have some snake oil I can sell you!!! CHEAP!!!

    August 3, 2012 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  14. winky

    @Randy what about bushes 10trillion are u going to be able to pay that back? If the republicans lose this election it will lose its party and they know this that's why they're running scared trying blame the President for the deficit!

    August 3, 2012 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  15. BLKMANinAmerica

    You go President Obama, also Mr. President please talk more about what the repuks in Congress have NOT done to help create jobs in America (in 2010 they-repuks-claimed they were running for office to do. NOT 1 job have they created) yea talk more about those sorry triflin repuks Sir. Thank you.

    August 3, 2012 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  16. whatwhat

    Really?...lol....he is "touting" his failed jobs record? Way to put a spin on things Dear Leader. From the Nobel to his jobs record...somehow people still think he is the new Gahndi when he is actually the new Jim Jones. Continue with the Kool Aid children.

    August 3, 2012 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  17. SEA12

    The insanity is reaching UNBELIEVABLE levels!!! Only this President would hold a press conference celebrating his jobs record on the day the unemployment rate goes UP!!! Are people in this country so stupid as to give this man another four years???!! This would be like any average American celebrating getting a "doesn't meet expectations" job review. It's official: the world is upside down.

    August 3, 2012 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  18. sonny chapman

    No Aiden, that would be the guy that preceded Obama; GEORGE W. BUSH.

    August 3, 2012 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  19. truth hurts

    >Rudy NYC – Unemployment is lower than what it was at the end of the Great Recession.

    now that would make great bumper sticker for the failure-in-chief!

    Obama/Biden – 2012 – Slightly Better than the Great Depression

    August 3, 2012 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  20. Rudy NYC

    truth hurts

    >Rudy NYC – What stopped the economic freefall? You guessed it. The Stimulus.

    the recession ended before a dime of it was even spent on all those non-existent shovel ready jobs. you're quite insane if you believe what you wrote. the recession ended 18 months after it began, which is what just about all recessions have done. and none of those had wasted nearly a trillion dollars to save government union jobs, that eventually had to be cut anyways.
    -------------------–
    Nearly half of the Stimulus was tax cuts. Many states used it to preserve police officers, teachers, fire fighters, and to pay for many planned school improvements that were about to be cancelled that summer. Yes, I believe it. Your problem is that you have no explanation for why the recession ended. Your problem is that you do not understand the depth of the recession. They named it Great Recession for a reason, you know.

    August 3, 2012 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  21. Peggy Munro

    Mr. President,

    The people understand your heart, your efforts and your plan. Wee are praying for you. We are with you. we know the American economy is facing challenges from outside the country due to the global nature of the economy.

    August 3, 2012 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  22. truth hurts

    >Beverly pondered: "Does "freedom" buy your groceries?"

    yes, actually it does, or used to anyways. my freedom allows me to make money in many ways in the usa. in countries with little or no freedom, people have a much harder time of it. are you asking if i will trade my freedom for groceries? my response is... are you insane?

    August 3, 2012 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  23. Rudy NYC

    Attention All Small Government Lovers:

    The most oppressed societies in the world have the smallest governments relative to size of population. Those societies are among the poorest in the world. Those societies have the fewest freedoms in the world. Those societies have the lowest economic output in the world. Those societies have the worst living conditions in the world. The governments of those societies are among the most despised in the world.

    August 3, 2012 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  24. maximusvad

    Even with all the fervor the Republicans have used to destroy the middle class....Obama keeps chugging along...Good Job Obama....the party of the darkside will not win.

    August 3, 2012 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  25. Susan NO LONGER a REPUBLICAN

    Romney will take us to his crazy whimpy home planet of Kolob and we'll all be slaves for the mormons!
    FORWARD OBAMA 2012

    August 3, 2012 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
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