Obama, Romney wrangle over economy in weekly addresses
October 6th, 2012
06:00 AM ET
6 years ago

Obama, Romney wrangle over economy in weekly addresses

(CNN) - President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney sparred in their weekly addresses Saturday over whose vision and policies are best for the country.

"Under President Obama, we will have a stagnant economy that fosters government dependency and chronically high unemployment," Romney said, asking for voters' support. "But if you elect me as president, we'll have pro-growth policies that foster upward mobility, strengthen the middle class and lift people out of poverty."

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Obama argued that the country was recovering from the recession and "we're seeing signs that, as a nation, we're moving forward again."

"After losing about 800,000 jobs a month when I took office, our businesses have now added 5.2 million new jobs over the past two and a half years," he said. "And on Friday, we learned that the unemployment rate is now at its lowest level since I took office. More Americans are entering the work force. More Americans are getting jobs."

Obama was citing job numbers released a day earlier showing the unemployment rate dropped from 8.1% to 7.8% in September.

That number was based on the government's household employment survey, which found 873,000 more Americans were employed in September than August. The Labor Department's survey of employers found 114,000 jobs had been created in the month and revised upward the July and August numbers.

The unemployment rate has not been that low since the month Obama was inaugurated, in January 2009.

Romney said his economic plan would lead to significantly more economic growth.

"On the economy, President Obama's plans for a second term all come down to more taxes, more borrowing and more spending," he said. "My Plan for a Stronger Middle Class will lead to rising incomes for everyone and create 12 million new jobs in my first term alone."

He also criticized Obama over his health reform law and handling of the national debt.

Obama did not name Romney in his address, but called for Congressional Republicans to work with him, accusing them of working instead to undo his policies.

"For some reason, some Republicans in Congress are still waging an all-out battle to delay, defund and dismantle these commonsense new rules," he said, citing banking regulations and other measures. "Do they think undoing rules that protect families from the worst practices of credit card companies and mortgage lenders will make the middle class stronger? Do they think getting rid of rules to prevent another crisis on Wall Street will make Main Street any safer?"

In the separate Republican Party weekly address, party chairman Reince Priebus argues that Obama has not done his job as president, and that Romney is better suited for the job.

"Midway through the debate, I think the president realized that he's been president for the past four years, and it was his policies and his agenda that have failed to produce any of the results that he promised us as a candidate," Priebus said.

Obama has placed campaigning ahead of holding the office, Priebus said.

"As a party chairman, I understand that the president must campaign," he said. "But he also has a job to do. While Barack Obama enjoys being president, he doesn't seem to enjoy the work required of being a great president."

Priebus went on to make the case for electing Romney, who he said is better than Obama on the economy and foreign policy.

Romney makes the case for himself Saturday when he hosts an early evening event in the battleground state of Florida.

Obama is off the campaign trail Saturday.

Filed under: 2012
soundoff (34 Responses)
  1. Gurgyl

    Right now this nation is in much better shape than anu gopidiots rule. We passedhealthcare, unemployment is way down to 7.7% and Bin Laden is killed, GM saved. Manufacturing is back..mitt BAIN-POLICIES ARE TO SHIP JOBS TO CHINA. I call mitt the twit as MR.CHINA. Yes, OBAMA12.
    PS: GOD IS ON OBAMA SIDE. Mitt sin will never win....true.

    October 6, 2012 06:51 am at 6:51 am |
  2. Wes Bayless

    In truth what each candidate is saying is, "Vote for me and I will enjoy unparalleled opulence, power, and influence over the will of the American public and global relations." The American public is forced to supplicate and acquiesce to obscene wealth and graft that endeavors to suppress our views and ideas which would determine the direction of our country. The public conscience is entirely ignored by the obesity of power. The American public is enslaved to a minority group of vastly powerful and wealthy people who ignore our desires in an effort to advance their own posture and prosperity. Our own common views and ideas that could promote growth and security are secondary to the advancement of opulence and power by some who feel they are better able to direct our future than embrace the national will. American public is in modern serfdom to a powerful and well guarded sphere of power and political derision. We enjoy only a confinement by a small group who dangle us by wires to dance for their pleasure.

    October 6, 2012 06:58 am at 6:58 am |
  3. CBR

    I am not buying what Mr. Romney has to sell. Massachusetts people did and he left them with a health care plan that was never paid for yet he is telling us that states should take on more burdens and that the federal government should be cutting back and handing off more to the states which are already reeling under the costs for implementing federal mandates,

    As governor Mr. Romney had ides for legislation. The unpopular ones were pushed through by others. His Lt. Governor worked with the legislature to get bills passed. His ideas never seemed to include rebuilding the western part of the state. interestingly, those towns and cities have large numbers of the 47%.

    October 6, 2012 07:05 am at 7:05 am |
  4. Bill O

    A recent survey of more than 300 of the most respected economists suggest that they favor Obama economic policies, to see it, google: "The Economist Ask the Experts". The Economist is a fiscally conservative magazine (they may even endorse Romney this year), however, their survey was quite clear in what the experts would do.

    October 6, 2012 07:58 am at 7:58 am |
  5. 1608

    My town has been lucky, most have been working. Okay of the 180.000+ we do have some on the Conner's asking for money, some in need most not.

    October 6, 2012 08:14 am at 8:14 am |
  6. mb

    What's the point of trying to attempt to get anything passed with the congress we have?

    October 6, 2012 08:27 am at 8:27 am |
  7. rla

    This report was an embarassment at best and a scam at worst... Sorry but reality has somehow escaped this administration

    October 6, 2012 09:05 am at 9:05 am |
  8. Anonymous

    Romney is better Suited, Maybe O'bama needs a new tailor. The nation needs fork tongue Romney ,like Custer needed Indians.Tax cut across the the board of 20%,then sneaks in the removal tax Deductions.Lose Mortgage deduction for middle class, will be a "TAX raise. Maybe Romney doe not have these problem,but mortgage deduction is big deal to middle class.Reagan used this scam and the middle class still think he didn't raise taxes.Just raise capital gain tax to 35% . Give the American middle class a crum ,they do the dying in wars ,wounded are now ask to beg for help.This GOP is nowhere near the " Conservative of old" they put America first. These dogs want to drag down the President and american worker along the way . Cause that what they get payed for, to run for office.GOP Platform since O'bama got into office,screw the baby in the tub throw him out too.

    October 6, 2012 09:09 am at 9:09 am |
  9. Anonymous

    Less than a month out from the election does anyone yet understand what Mitt Romney's real plans for America are?

    Less than a month out from the election does anyone yet understand exactly where Mitt Romney has invested his time and resources throughout his life?

    Less than a month out from the election does anyone yet understand who Mitt Romney represents in America.

    Less than a month out from the election our American media wants us to believe that the majority of American citizens actually prefer a confused and chaotic Mitt Romney who stands for absolutely nothing as the next President of the United States?

    October 6, 2012 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  10. Puddin

    It's funny how the Repubs beat Obama about the head and shoulders when the unemployment rate is higher, but when it falls, they accuse the Dept. of Labor of "cooking the numbers." They give all these outrageous reasons why it has dropped lower. Obama gets the blame but not the credit from the Repubs. It just shows they are pea green with envy, and they are desperate. After getting caught red-handed, now Romney is saying he wants "to care for the 100%." How sweet. We should all listen carefully to the tone he used on the 47%. Die-hard Repubs should remember some of them will be part of that 47%. These Repubs are all phonies; I would never trust them.

    October 6, 2012 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  11. GI Joe

    Romney started off with lies that were obvious. Obama could have yelled out Lie every time, but people would have labeled Obama ANGRY.

    President Obama saw what Romney was trying to do. Push him around like the BULLY Romney has been since he was a child.

    October 6, 2012 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  12. GI Joe

    What kind of man fires someone like Mr. Lehrer in front of 60 Million people? A bully and a jerk. Power-hungry, control-freak Mutt is gonna pay at the polls.


    October 6, 2012 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  13. gep1955

    Conservatives want a country with millions of millionaires.

    Marxist/socialist democrats want a country with millions of dependants

    Which group would you prefer to see YOUR kids in?

    October 6, 2012 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  14. Renee

    Mitt Romney cannot be trusted.

    October 6, 2012 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  15. jpmichigan

    Obama call for honesty from Romney, but doesnot provide it himself. One has to check and double check remarks made by Obama, for ones self, to get the real facts and numbers. 600,00 manufacturing jobs have been lost, the jobless rate should be 11 to 14 % instead of 7.8%. One has to count in the under-employed and will as those who have quit looking for work. Those numbers are why the use of ffod stamps and mediaide has grow to such high numbers. Honesty is a virtue, that is not associated with the Obama administration, pandering, fabrication and fuzzy math is. As the saying goes,"Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me." There are multiple reasons not to re-elect Obama, one just need to rely on one self to check the facts yourself. Do not rely on others, for the majority of those have a hidden agenda.

    October 6, 2012 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  16. I was willing to give Romney a chance, but this week he is concerning

    President Obama has been steadfast in his approach to stabilizing and building real growth and it is working. You believe The President when he says he is working hard for the citizenry. Romney by contrast shifts with the wind, which is now why he is trying his best to look like he has Democrat principles, but he is not a Democrat as evidenced by his positions during the Republican primaries, or maybe Romney was trying to look different then. Romney seems on the attack, but directionless. Still details on how he could create 12 million jobs. How?

    October 6, 2012 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  17. Loida

    I remember Romney said ,that if he becomes the President no taxes for Dividend Ever...my opinion he will probably used this power to makes himself the riches man in the World .....of course it is not against the law to be too selfish regardless .....He is making an arguments that the Economy is really Bad ,,,But He Creates Business that bringing Jobs Offshores to get away to paying Taxes in the U.S, Does He thinks all Americans can not figure what really is happening ?????

    October 6, 2012 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  18. cntrrealist

    I just don't understand why so many in our country are in favor of more handouts and not interested in making a way for themselves...having control of their own destiny. The American culture used to embrace that...now it seems they are more interested in embracing a free EBT card and being proud of it, being proud of getting a hand out. I don't get it, but that's a large base that Obama is fostering and increasing. If he is re-elected that will continue to grow for the next four years, fundamentally changing our culture for the worse. Look to Greece as an example of how that turns out.

    October 6, 2012 10:18 am at 10:18 am |

    Meh. I'm still voting OBAMA/BIDEN in November. Mitt Romney does not impress me with his word salads.

    October 6, 2012 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  20. Ancient Texan

    If we reelect Obama, the America we have known and loved all these years will become....North Cuba.

    October 6, 2012 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  21. Fact

    The unemployment rate is going down. Now think if Congress had actually passed bills to create jobs instead of just saying "NO." Like the Jobs bill for Veterans they just voted against two weeks ago.

    October 6, 2012 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  22. judy

    if you just want a lier then pick romney. He is really good at that as is lyin ryan. substance and truth mean nothing to these two. We are just climbing out of the toilet and the repos want to put us right back in with the same old policies. Take a look at history everytime a repo gets in the ecomony falls . Repos try and ignore this but we havent been in good shape since Clinton and now that we are turning it around they want to shove the middleclass back down so the rich can get richer. Vote all repos out. Forward.

    October 6, 2012 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  23. truth hurts

    "The drop was due to the Bureau of Labor Statistics' survey of households showing that 873,000 more people had jobs than in the previous month."

    The quote above explains the "cooking" of the books. There was no unemployment drop but somehow they claim to have called nearly a million people and have somehow determined that nearly ONE MILLION people had jobs that they didn't already know about. NOW ISN'T THAT AMAZING!! One month before election day it's a miracle! All of a sudden ONE MILLION more people suddenly have jobs! Even though only 117,000 new jobs were created. One would think almost one million more employed people would show up in the payroll tax records. These numbers stink to high heaven.

    Seriously... I was born at night but I wasn't born last night.

    October 6, 2012 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  24. CanadaONE

    The GOP put you in this hole – why didn't Romney act when Bush was in an economic mess

    ANSWER – no solutions then and none NOW – just FAKE statements

    America will look real STUPID if they vote GOP

    the level of intellegence has declined significantly in the USA the USA is ranked 37 in the world and declining fast because of the GOP

    the GOP is so STUPID they are now blaming BIG BIRD – how stupid can you get???

    October 6, 2012 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  25. Majestic

    Gov. Romney. PLEASE! For Heavens Sake! Just answer one question for me..will you guarantee me that, under your/Ryan's tax plan, I will keep my home mortgage and charitable deductions? Is that a difficult question? Take all the time you want. Thank you.

    October 6, 2012 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
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