Jobs report boosts Obama; Romney not impressed

Associated Press Modified: October 5, 2012 at 6:46 pm •  Published: October 5, 2012

Romney launched three new commercials during the day, one aimed at voters in Nevada, a second targeted to Ohio and a third that says Obama claims "he is creating jobs, but he's really creating debt," running up deficits and spending unnecessarily. "He's not just wasting it. He's borrowing it and then wasting it," the narrator says.

The campaign did not say where it would air.

Romney's strong showing in the campaign's first general election debate cheered Republicans who had worried about his campaign, and forced Obama's aides into a rare public acknowledgement that they would have to adjust their strategy for the next encounter.

The jobs report was the main flashpoint of the day, and Obama scolded Republicans for their reaction.

"Today's news certainly is not an excuse to try to talk down the economy to score a few political points," he said as Romney and most GOP lawmakers emphasized portions of the report other than the drop in the unemployment rate to the same level as when the president took office.

Republicans made it clear they wanted to keep the focus on Wednesday night's debate, when Romney appeared confident as he pitched his case for a new approach to the economy and Obama turned in a performance that even some Democrats conceded was subpar.

"I enjoyed that debate a couple nights ago. That was a great experience," Romney told a crowd of more than 5,000 in St. Petersburg, Fla. Friday night, declining to cite the new jobs report.

In a weekly "Weekend Messaging Memo" distributed by the Republican National Committee, communications director Sean Spicer devoted 650 words to a recap of the debate — and made no mention of the drop in unemployment.

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Associated Press writer Steve Peoples in Virginia and Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar in Washington contributed to this story. Espo reported from Washington.