President Obama speaks at a campaign event in Maumee, Ohio, on Thursday.
Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images.
UPDATE: President Obama’s campaign made it clear it would try to change the focus of the conversation about dismal job numbers, releasing a new ad that focuses on Mitt Romney’s time at Bain Capital. The ad claims Mitt Romney “made a fortune” outsourcing American jobs to China while he worked at Bain Capital, reports the Hill.
“Mitt Romney is not the solution,” says the ad. “He is the problem.”
The move comes a few days after the White House filed a complaint with the World Trade Organization claiming Beijing is abusing trade laws.
Romney shot back against the ad, saying that “if the Obama team would spend half as much effort on the economy as they do creating false attacks, maybe the middle class would be better off,” reports Politico.
Friday, July 6: On the campaign trail in Ohio, Obama defended the ability of the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate to work well by citing the success of Mitt Romney's health care reform in Massachusetts as an example.
According to Politico, the president said: "You hear all these folks say, 'No, no, no, this is a tax, a burden on middle class families," adding, "We know," that the plan will work "because the guy I'm running against tried this in Massachusetts and it's working just fine."
Obama also directly addressed Romney's change of position on the individual mandate's status as a tax Friday, telling WLWT television in Cincinnati the following:
"The fact that a whole bunch of Republicans in Washington suddenly said this is a tax - for six years, he said it wasn't, and now he suddenly reversed himself," adding, "And so, the question becomes 'Are you doing that because of politics? Are you abandoning a principle that you fought for six years simply because you're getting pressure for two days?" (via Reuters)
Mitt Romney had long said the mandate was a penalty for not buying insurance, not a tax, a position his campaign seemed to continue after the Supreme Court ruling said the measure is constitutional as a tax. But on Wednesday, he changed his language and began to call it a tax, falling in line with GOP talking points on the ruling.
Thursday, June 5: President Obama told a crowd in the critical swing state of Ohio that repealing the health care law is not an option, reports Politico. "The law I passed is here to stay," he said, as he celebrated the Supreme Court's decision. It marks the closest Obama has come to "spiking the football" on the decision, points out the Hill.
Obama also strongly criticized China, saying that his administration has filed a complaint with the World Trade Organization contending that Beijing is abusing trade laws by imposing more than $3 billion in duties on U.S. cars, reports Reuters.
"Americans aren't afraid to compete," Obama said. "As long as we're competing on a fair playing field instead of an unfair playing field, we're going to do just fine. We're going to make sure that competition is fair."
Obama uttered the words on the first stop in a two-day bus tour (his first of his official re-election campaign) that will take him through Ohio's northern manufactuing belt and western Pennsylvania. It began the day before the release of the next jobs report.
Obama won both of the states in the 2008 election, but Republicans increasingly think they can win them for Romney in November, the Associated Press notes. The WTO complaint seems particularly aimed at gaining favor in Ohio, where there are many auto-supply workers.
The trip looks to target working-class men, a demographic not firmly committed to either candidate, Reuters reports. For that demographic, they explain, the economy (and the pending jobs report) is a key issue with a lot of potential to sway voters in either direction. Obama is currently polling the best with women and Hispanics.
His attempt to gain blue-collar support this week might be hampered by a report released Monday that showed manufacturing in the country contracted for the first time in three years.