August 3rd, 2012
07:37 PM ET
2 years ago

Sununu: White House 'numb and dumb' on jobs report

(CNN) - As both sides of the aisle put political spin on Friday's job report, outspoken Mitt Romney surrogate John Sununu weighed in, calling the White House and advisers' comments on the report "numb and dumb."

"They're numb because they're insensitive to the 25 million people that are unemployed and underemployed. And they're dumb because they're deceptive," the Romney national campaign co-chairman said Friday on CNN's "The Situation Room."

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Sununu, the former New Hampshire governor and chief of staff to former President George H.W. Bush, continued, "There were 162,000 jobs created primarily by the artifact of a seasonal adjustment. There were 175,000 fewer people working last month than the month before. These people - if (President Obama) wants to brag about 163,000 phantom new workers, the 152,000 who lost their job are not very happy to hear what Mr. Krueger and the president have to say about trying to spin this as good news."

July's jobs report showed an increase in hiring in the private sector but also an increase in the nation's unemployment rate, which a 10th of a percentage point from 8.2% to 8.3% from last month.

Earlier Friday, Alan Krueger, chairman of Obama's Council of Economic Advisers, touted the 172,000 new jobs in the private sector, steering away from the rising unemployment numbers.

Obama followed suit, highlighting the private sector portion of the report in remarks in Washington.

"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 at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on Friday. "Those are our neighbors and family members finding work and the security that comes with work."

At a campaign event in Nevada - a state with unemployment numbers above the national average - presumptive GOP presidential nominee Romney said the report was a "hammer blow to struggling middle-class families."

"A lot of people are suffering in this country," Romney said. "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 as a recession."

Sununu also defended the Republican candidate on Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's allegations that an unnamed Bain Capital investor told him that Romney had not been paying taxes. Reid and fellow Democrats have been calling for Romney to release more of his tax returns, suggesting that the wealthy businessman may have something in his financial profile that he wants to hide.

Romney has made public the full 2010 tax return and an estimate for 2011, with a pledge to release the full year once it's complete. He filed an extension for an October deadline, refusing to release further tax documentation.

A loyal Romney aide, Sununu said the political conversation would veer away from distractions like Reid's comments as the public begins to pay more attention to the campaign - a shift that he says will happen about a week or two out from the Republican National Convention in late August.

–CNN's Tom Cohen and Gregory Wallace contributed to this report.

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Filed under: Jobs • John Sununu • Mitt Romney
soundoff (189 Responses)
  1. Peikovianyii

    GWB left us down a well, BHO dug his own way to China and asked them to refinance the shovel.

    August 4, 2012 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  2. JTR80

    The big corporations are spending multi-millions to buy this election, and if Romney wins he will do whatever they say because they own him.

    August 4, 2012 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  3. Toby McDooogan

    Republicans are just a bunch of OLD WHITE CHRISTIANS!!!!!!!

    ************** Please do not focus on the economy!!!! Obama 2012 **************

    August 4, 2012 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  4. urownexperience

    And Mittens numb and dumb about tax returns.

    August 4, 2012 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  5. JBoston

    The idiocy presented by the liberal here are staggering. Unemployment is caused by Romney off-shoring jobs? How anyone could possibly this stupid boggles my mind. As to the idiots claiming we have had 29 consecutive months of job growth, how can you possibly make that claim in the face of an every upward trending rate of unemployment?

    The fact is that the low job rate is not at ALL to do with a reduction in teachers or other public sector workers. sorry liberals, no manufactured facts for you today. It's the PRIVATE sector which has been steadily losing jobs. You know, the section of our economy that actully GENERATES wealth.

    Or are you liberals seriously so stupid as to believe that the government can create wealth?

    The ability to vote should be contingent on passing a basic civics exam and passing a mental health panel.

    August 4, 2012 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  6. Billy Ray

    Speaking of NUM, JSUN did you ever pay back the government for all the trips you took ?

    August 4, 2012 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  7. Tamas Jake

    Such treasonous glee from a major advocate of Republican obstructionism. Sununu is just another draft dodger, leaving the heavy lifting to others.

    August 4, 2012 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  8. cramerwest1

    No body was very interested in President Obama's tax return's so much because of the career path he chose as a community organizer, honorable as this is, not much in the way of a resume. However because he didn't have much in the way of tax returns, or work history to talk about we the people ask for a very long time, for him to show us his birth certificate, how long did it take for him to produce one? Another question often ask of our leader in Chief was to have a look at his college transcripts and applications, why can't we the people get a complete picture of this man ? No acusations here just enquiring minds wanting to understand who we are voting for or not ! Why do these enquiries get such outrage, if I apply for a job and state I have such and such qualifications, and am asked to support my claims with verification, i am obligated to produce it, or I will not be offered the job, understandibly ! These distractions cause great division in our nation, causing strife within families and the community at large, if he is or was a community organizer he should understand this. Please Mr. President become the leader, and organizer we were told you were, however I think we all got duped, and in similar words to that of the former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, i guess we had to vote for him to see what we were voting for.
    Mr. Romney has a very public record and weather or not you like what you see at least the picture is clear, and in the public domain, I am inclined to go with what is clearly visible, a successful business man with real life experiences to bring to a White how gasping for leadership.

    August 4, 2012 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  9. Frenchy

    Since the 1960's I have watched the politics of this nation and I have listened to each candidate promise to do this or that and be disappointed when they did not follow through on their campaign promises. I have learned that no matter what you say as a politician is going to happen it most likely won't because of other facrtors such as Congress. The government can not create jobs no matter how much money it spends only business does this since it has the resources to do it. The government has to rely on taxes to get its money and we are taxed enough now as it is.

    I have listened to young men and women fresh out of school bragging about how the government can do and I used to believe that too when I was young. Since then I have discovered that is an untrue statement and was simple brainwashing on the part of the educational process. Now I read some of the comments from some of the commenters and the only thing they can say is, Sununu who? I suspect that many of them are young, too young to have lived during the job slowdown of the 1960's that stretched into the 1980's with little more than some bumps in empoyment. It was not until the mid 1990's that employment took off in a big way pretty much like it was in the 1950's after WW2.

    This current administration was not handed a good economy when it started and it has struggled trying to get things going much like the Roosevelt admistration did in the 1930's by increasing government spending. It did not work then so why should we think it will work now. Yes the economy did improve but people were still in depression state much like we are today. It was entering WW2 that took our mind off of the depression.

    Since 2008 we have skyrocketing fuel prices and huge national debt facing this nation and politicians wonder why we are not coming out of the recession sooner? This president has been campaigning since he took office in 2009 without any major leadership being shown to the nation coupled with the democratic party ramming the ACA down our throats when most people wanted to know what it was all about before we passed this act. Yet they wonder why we are angry and even blame the tea party movement. Right now the majority of the people who vote are the senior citizens and that is made up of we baby boomers. Most of still work for a living and do not rely on the government for our living as we have seen happen since Lyndon Johnson envisioned a Great Society and Congress wrote a blank check.

    You wonder why we are angry and upset then read up on your history and listen to those of us who have lived the last 60 years.

    August 4, 2012 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  10. John in Brooklyn

    Sununu is a Palestinian.

    August 4, 2012 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  11. Bob C.

    163,000 seems like a small number compared to the 25 million people who are unemployed and underemployed.

    Obama has had more than three years to fix our problems. He has failed.

    August 4, 2012 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  12. Joseph

    Sununu? Really? Why is this washed up has been who was both a failure as a governor and as a White House Staffer getting any consideration as a pundit or Romney potential staffer? Really? What's next... Adding Michael Milkin as a financial advisor?

    August 4, 2012 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  13. Name

    this is unbelievable how they judge the president when he became president bush left all the dirt he left behind if the Republican doesn't obama how in the world will he fix this mess i know for IM VOTING FOR OBAMA I WANT TO GIVE A SECOND CHANCE

    August 4, 2012 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  14. ciabella23

    John Sununu is one to really believe, was he not released for ethical violations while serving under Bush, the same as Karl Rove. But then again, you look at Fox News, and who do you have there, seems like nothing but a group of reporters who have been caught overstepping the line, and they are still trying to maintain some since of credibility....

    August 4, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
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