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Jobs report brings strong responses from Iowa congressmen, challengers

James Q. Lynch, CR Gazette –

President Obama played down a worse-than-expected June jobs report, calling it a “step in the right direction” at a campaign stop in Ohio.

Iowa congressmen and challengers were slightly less sanguine about the report that showed 84,000 jobs were created last month.

While the president emphasize that June marked 28 consecutive months of job growth, 2nd District Rep. Dave Loebsack said it “makes one thing very clear– we have a long way to go to get the economy back to where it should be.”

The Iowa City Democrat quickly laid the blame on House majority Republicans who “have so far shown no interest in even discussing a comprehensive jobs package.”

His GOP challenger, John Archer, said the report made clear “the private sector is not ‘doing fine’ as Obama says it is.” In fact, seven of the 10 counties with the worst unemployment levels in Iowa are in the 2nd District, he said.

The problem is the policies of “Obama and Loebsack have clearly not worked for Iowans,” Archer said.

Campaigning for a second day in the battleground state of Ohio, Obama sought to put a positive spin on the monthly report.

Businesses “have created 4.4 million new jobs over the past 28 months, including 500,000 new manufacturing jobs.” he said. “That’s a step in the right direction.”

Republican Party of Iowa Chairman A.J. Spiker saw the numbers differently. The second quarter was the worst quarter of job creation in two years and the unemployment rate has been over 8 percent for 41 straight months.

The report demonstrates “Obama’s complete failure on the economy,” the GOP leader said.

The solution, according to Loebsack, who accused Republicans of playing partisan games on job creation, is bipartisanship.

“I have long said that fixing our economy should not be a partisan fight,” he said. “If there is one thing that should bring the two parties together, it is working to create jobs.”

Fourth District Rep. Tom Latham, a Clive Republican, sounded s similar theme.

“I’m working for a better path to a real long-term recovery that restores economic security and opportunity for all Iowans,” Latham said. “I stand ready to work with any of my colleagues in Congress, regardless of political affiliation, who want to enact common-sense, bipartisan solutions that will allow real job creation and economic recovery to take root.”

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