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The economy on the campaign trail

Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney pounces on a weak jobs report Friday, denouncing President Barack Obama's economic policies. (SOUNDBITE) (English) MITT ROMNEY, REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE, SAYING: "We have seen the jobs report this morning and it is another kick in the gut to middle class families. It's consistent with what I've heard as I've gone across the country and met with families in their homes, in cafes and restaurants and in break rooms. American families are struggling. There's a lot of misery in America today, and these numbers understate what people are feeling and the amount of pain which is occurring in middle class America." The monthly jobs report, showed anemic growth last month. But Obama, in the battleground state of Ohio, emphasized the positive. (SOUNDBITE) (English) BARACK OBAMA, U.S. PRESIDENT, SAYING: "We learned this morning that our businesses created 84,000 new jobs last month and that overall means that businesses have created 4.4 million new jobs over the past 28 months, including 500,000 new manufacturing jobs. That's a step in the right direction. That's a step in the right direction." Voters' concerns over a fragile economy and stubbornly high joblessness threaten Obama's re-election chances. Deborah Lutterbeck, Reuters

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