The Candidates and The World

Transition 2012

A guide to foreign policy and the 2012 U.S. presidential transition.

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Weekend Roundup: Candidates Differ Over Job Market Report

by Newsteam Staff
April 9, 2012

Photo of the Day: President Barack Obama and family walk from the White House to an Easter Church service April 8, 2012 (Jonathan Ernst/Courtesy Reuters). Photo of the Day: President Barack Obama and family head to an Easter Church service April 8, 2012 (Jonathan Ernst/Courtesy Reuters).


A new U.S. jobs report showing market continues to improve was good news — or bad, depending on which presidential candidate was talking about it (ABC).

Incumbent President Barack Obama said the report is “further evidence that the economy is continuing to recover.” On the other hand, Mitt Romney called the report “weak and very troubling” and an indication that current economic policies are not working, leaving the United States without a global competitive edge.

The Labor Department report out Friday shows that 120,000 jobs were added in March, which is a more “moderate pace” (Bloomberg) than analyst predicted.

Consumer spending was up in March and increased spending could create more retail jobs and spur more economic growth, Gallup said. Daily spending in stores, restaurants, gas stations, and online averaging $74 per day in March, up from $63 in February, Gallup said.

Jobs and the economy have been a top issue for voters at every turn of the 2012 campaign season so far.

As GOP presidential frontrunner Mitt Romney continues to forge his foreign policy message, more attention is being drawn to his long-standing friendship with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (NYT).

The pair “employ similar methods in analyzing problems and coming up with solutions for them,” Netanyahu says, due in large part to their shared time and experience at the Boston Consulting Group in the 1970s.

Republican candidate Newt Gingrich says he intends to stay in the race to influence the party’s platform, particularly his energy policy and his plan to use funds from energy to pay down the debt (Fox News Sunday).

Gingrich has made energy one of his primary issues in the campaign saying if he is elected, his policies will bring gas prices down to $2.50 per gallon and reduce or eliminate reliance on foreign oil. He also hopes to influence the party (WashPost) on brain science and states’ rights.

— Gayle S. Putrich, Contributing Editor

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