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. Mike Chino Hills

    As a Registered Republican, John Sununu should show his Birth Certificate!! I'm not sure he is even a US Citizen....... I'd like to see Chuck Norris kick his Butt !! LOL.. Politics is petty................. These people are intrusted with our future

    August 3, 2012 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  2. Lone wolf

    Another hate filled Republican ranting at the White House. Why want this hater just admit that it is his party and business supporters to blame for the economic problems of our nation. They are the o es who do not want our economy to get better in order to defeat President Obama. Let's not forget that the Party of no and hate p,edged that heir number on priority was to make President Obama a one term President. These guys are willing to destroy our economy in order to get their way.

    August 3, 2012 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  3. w5cdt

    Sununu...go back in your hole...you have no solutions....only arm chair quarterbacking.

    August 3, 2012 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  4. Iamnotfooled

    Hey Mr. Sununu--Maybe you should talk to John Boehner and ask him why when all these people are out of work, he and the House of Reps are on vacation till Sept. 10, 2012. In 2010 they won and said they would create jobs. Where are the jobs? Is this how they show the people they are worried about them? They blame President Obama, but he can't sign a bill if they don't give him one that has been passed by House and Senate. Boehner and Cantor are the failures not President Obama.

    August 3, 2012 11:58 pm at 11:58 pm |
  5. cardog

    John Sununu is a lap dog of the TeapubliCANT party and will say anything, do anything, only to apologize later. Sununu and many many others have been the image of disrespect, vitrioil since the election of President Barak H. Obama.
    It is people like Sununu that make our country and our political system a laughing stock. For over three years now, people once repected as political leaders, talk show host and T.V. personalities have shown their true colors all in the name of being against the President's policies (wink wink).
    Hopefully this coming November America will again show it's true colors and send these right-wing fringe nuts (Tea Party Suppoted) packing.

    August 4, 2012 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  6. Tubby the Tuba Texasc

    The man could raise 500,000 jobs and the republican idiots would say what a waste. There is no pleasing them, unless of course it Romney in office and he creates 2000 jobs then you'l hear how great and wonderful and tough the times are. If you believe Romney will come up with 12 million jobs you are stupid. He is a liar!

    August 4, 2012 12:10 am at 12:10 am |
  7. Lisa

    Could Romney and his clan be any more sophmoric? Sorry, no President here.

    August 4, 2012 12:10 am at 12:10 am |
  8. James Ruston

    For a Party that set as its highest goal making Obama a one term president and then set about blocking practically everything he proposed, they really shouldn't talk about his being insensitive to 25 million out of work. This is SOP for the Republicans. Accuse the Democrats of what you are guilty of yourself and hope no one notices.

    August 4, 2012 12:23 am at 12:23 am |
  9. tfbuckfutter

    Ok, maybe I'm simplifying too much....but if there is 163,000 jobs created in the PRIVATE sector while 152,000 jobs are lost NOT in the private sector....doesn't that mean those jobs were cut from the PUBLIC sector....a result of....umm....BUDGET CUTS championed by Republicans?

    August 4, 2012 12:27 am at 12:27 am |
  10. Lenny Pincus

    John Sununu? Isn't he the guy who got fooled into recommending Stephen Breyer for the SCOTUS? Yeah, we really need his opinion on anything.

    August 4, 2012 12:39 am at 12:39 am |
  11. Thinker

    Look who is calling someone else "dumb". The dumbest person on the planet is Mitt the twit.

    August 4, 2012 12:42 am at 12:42 am |
  12. mk1

    If the White House is dumb, Sununu is stupid, but that goes with our saying.

    August 4, 2012 12:42 am at 12:42 am |
  13. nmmell08

    Whats dumb and stupid is a Job's bill sitting aound in the House with no Republican wanting to pass it b/c it would be a victory for Obama and the Economy

    August 4, 2012 12:44 am at 12:44 am |
  14. tony

    What are we waiting for? It's the TAX RETURNS, stupid!

    August 4, 2012 12:45 am at 12:45 am |
  15. AgeofInsanity

    Robmey release your tax returns.

    August 4, 2012 01:08 am at 1:08 am |
  16. abnguy

    162000 jobs created and yet the unemployment rate goes up. There is something screwy with how the Unemployment rate is calculated and all this seasonally adjusted modifier. The U-6 "real" unemployment figures are at 15.2%.

    August 4, 2012 01:13 am at 1:13 am |
  17. SFRich

    Romney's pit bull barks again...

    Doesn't make HIM smart. After all, he's the guy that said a few weeks ago that Obama needs to learn how to be an American.

    August 4, 2012 01:14 am at 1:14 am |
  18. Synthetically Thought...

    Since when is the GOP "sensitive" to the unemployed or the underemployed? Isn't this the party that fights to end benefits for the unemployed because they are just bumming off the government? Isn't his the party that fights to squelch the effectiveness of Unions whose existence is to protect the working class; ensuring decent pay and benefits? Isn't this the party that promotes "off shoring" of jobs and in fact refused to legislate against the tax breaks that companies get when they off shore the jobs? I am so confused. It appears the entire GOP is flip flopping alongside Romney now.

    August 4, 2012 01:21 am at 1:21 am |
  19. Harry From Pa

    This is funny because people think Mitt Romney and the GOP are number to average Americans, are they really this blind?

    August 4, 2012 01:39 am at 1:39 am |
  20. Nelson

    John, did you ever pay for all those plane trips you took on our dime? You were numb to how unfair you were and dumb if you thought we would forget it. If you do not the unemployment number, John, then get your buddies in Congress to work with Obama and do something about it!

    August 4, 2012 01:48 am at 1:48 am |
  21. I'mvotingforobama

    Using GOP logic he is a terrorist because his daddy was Palestinian.

    August 4, 2012 01:59 am at 1:59 am |
  22. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    Sununu was Governor of a tiny state 30 years ago... why is he relevant now?

    August 4, 2012 02:01 am at 2:01 am |
  23. judith

    I notice the Romney campaign is making use of the crooked old washed up pol Sununu to be is surrogate.

    August 4, 2012 02:06 am at 2:06 am |
  24. Teena

    Talk about numb and dumb- can Mitt come up with Any other tax plan except give the wealthy a tax break on the backs of the poor and middle class! We can practice more of the "trickle down" economics that we are under now! The wealthy are paying their lowest tax rates ever and the middle class is shrinking because the wealthy are hoarding their money rather than investing ing growth!

    August 4, 2012 02:14 am at 2:14 am |
  25. Dave

    Romney's Bane capital shipped our jobs to China, now they are saying its Obama's fault.. Typical Repubes: create a mess and then blame someone else. Obama is turning the economy around.. It takes time to fix 8 years of Bushonomics

    August 4, 2012 02:18 am at 2:18 am |
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