Romney Hits Obama Over Jobs, But His VP Candidates Tout Job Creation

Despite 26 consecutive months of private sector jobs growth, Mitt Romney has nonetheless opened a full court press against President Obama over the recovering economy, claiming that the jobs market has not improved at all in the three years since Obama took office.

Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul appeared on CNN yesterday morning to renew the attack:

President Obama hasn’t created a net single new job,” Saul asserted. “And so we need someone that actually has the experience, has actually done these things, balanced budgets, instead of someone who is just offering up political gimmicks and trying to tear down his opponent instead of looking at the full part of his record.”

It’s a hard sell to anyone with access to a newspaper, since last week the Wall Street Journal reported that there are now more private sector jobs than when President Obama took office in 2009.

And the Romney campaign’s mission to convince voters is being made even more difficult thanks to several prominent Republican politicians — many of whom are widely speculated to be on Romney’s vice presidential short list — who have been touting their home states’ job creation numbers:

  • There’s Ohio Senator Rob Portman (R), a VP shortlister, who was quick to point out his state’s recent success at creating jobs. “Well we are creating jobs already. So far we’ve created thousands of jobs already,” he said last week.

  • Or Ohio Governor John Kasich (R): “We were the No. 1 job creator in America in February, and we are now the No. 4 job creator in the last year.”
  • Or Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell (R), also on the VP shortlist: “We have put in place policies that help private-sector job creators innovate and grow.”
  • South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley (R), also a rumored VP pick, even put together a video touting several successful jobs initiatives.
  • Or Florida Governor Rick Scott (R) who, while defending his beleaguered chief of staff to a group of reporters said, “we’re getting a lot of good things done — jobs are coming back.”

This will likely be a problem for Romney going forward: The local politicians will want to tout their job creation record, even as their standard bearer wants to try to case the economy in a negative light. They can’t have it both ways.