Welcome to Ohio. I have a simple question for you: Where are the jobs?
As we enter the fourth year of your term, unemployment is over 8 percent and has been for your entire term. Nearly 23 million men and women are unemployed, underemployed or are no longer even looking for work. In the face of such challenges, many Americans have simply given up hope.
I recognize, of course, as do all Americans, that you inherited an economic crisis. But you've now had three years to turn things around. The record of those three years is clear. Your policies have failed, not only in Ohio, but across the nation.
Look, this shouldn't be that hard. When Obama took office in January 2009, there were 142.2 million people employed in America. This was off from the peak of 146.6 million in November 2007. So, it's true, as Romney acknowledges, that Obama inherited an economic crisis caused by the financial industry panic, the collapse of the mortgage markets, the collapse of the housing market, etc. But today, forty months since he took office, there are only 141.9 million jobs. In other words, we've lost jobs. And, as I've noted before, you actually need to be adding about 3,000,000 jobs a year just to keep up with population growth. So he's about 10 million jobs shy since he took office, and would need to "create" about 15 million jobs to get us back to the employed/population ratio we had in 2007. It's a dismal record, and all Romney should need to do is to just say so, over and over and over.