(CNN) – Mitt Romney's latest ad, released Wednesday, sticks to his campaign's longstanding economic message that policies enacted by President Barack Obama aren't working for many Americans.
Speaking directly to the camera in the minute-long spot, the GOP presidential nominee says, "Too many Americans are struggling to find work in today's economy. Too many of those who are working are living paycheck to paycheck, trying to make falling incomes meet rising prices for food and gas. More Americans are living in poverty than when President Obama took office and 15 million more are on food stamps."
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Romney acknowledges that "President Obama and I both care about poor and middle-class families," but goes on to suggest the president's policies have made it harder for Americans to find work and to rely less on the federal government for assistance.
"We shouldn't measure compassion by how many people are on welfare," Romney says. "We should measure compassion by how many people are able to get off welfare and get a good paying job."
The ad concludes with Romney re-stating his campaign promise of creating 12 million new jobs in his first term in office, which he says will "lift families out of poverty" and strengthen the middle class.
The ad reflects a return by the Romney campaign to a core economic message it has attempted to push for months. By casting Obama as a decent man who cares about the middle class, but whose policies have not worked, Romney's team is looking to sway voters who cast ballots for Obama in 2008 but are ready for change in 2012.
The economic message has been overshadowed somewhat in recent weeks by foreign policy, first after an attack in Libya that killed the American ambassador and more recently by Obama's assertion that events in the Middle East, including the Libya attack, were merely "bumps in the road" toward democracy in the region.
Romney has hammered the president for his foreign-policy decisions on the campaign trail and in interviews, but polls still show voters think Obama is better positioned to handle foreign policy as president.
The Obama campaign issued a statement about Romney's new ad later Wednesday morning:
"Mitt Romney's new ad is just more of the evasiveness that his campaign has become known for. He pays lip service to working Americans, but doesn't name a single policy to strengthen the middle class," the statement read. "With 41 days left, Mitt Romney has limited time to level with the American people about what he'd do if elected. As each day passes, he continues to fail to do that."