Firefighters vs. Private Sector: Obama, Romney Out with New Web Videos


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Justin Sullivan/Getty Images/PeteSouza/White House(ATLANTA) — A series of dueling web videos were released by the Romney and Obama campaigns Monday morning that hinge on comments made by each of the candidates last week — the president saying the private sector is “doing fine,” and the presumptive GOP candidate suggesting he opposes additional firefighters and teachers.

The Romney campaign has released its second web video in a 24-hour period that uses Obama’s “doing fine” line, repeating the comment as evidence that the commander-in-chief is “out of touch.”

Similarly, the Obama re-election campaign released a web video that suggests that part of Romney’s jobs plan is to eliminate firefighters and teachers after the candidate remarked last week, “He wants to add more to government.  He says he we need more firemen, more policemen, more teachers.  Did he not get the message in Wisconsin?  The American people did.  It’s time for us to cut back on government and help the American people.”

In the Romney campaign’s web video released Monday morning, titled “Jolt,” footage of newsmakers talking about the state of the economy on June 1, the day the disappointing May jobs numbers came out, is played.

“Tonight on World News: Jobs Jolt, the worst jobs number in a year,” says ABC News’ Diane Sawyer as the web video begins.  Clips from fellow newsmakers discussing the state of the economy follow.

Then text that reads “One week later” flashes on the screen, and viewers hear President Obama in his own words: “The private sector is doing fine.  Where we’re seeing weaknesses in our economy have to do with state and local government.”

The president’s remarks, which came during a press conference on Friday, have been used by the Romney campaign since.  Mitt Romney himself launched into harsh criticism of the president for saying what he did during a campaign event last week in Iowa, and his campaign aides throughout the weekend used the now so-called gaffe to push forward their message that the president doesn’t know how to handle the economy.

On Sunday, the campaign released their first web video using the president’s private sector remarks, this time drawing on statements from middle class Americans discussing their struggles in the economy.

The web video, titled “Fine?,” features workers remarking, “We’ve seen layoffs, cutbacks,” and “Sometimes I feel like I’m a failure,” before replaying the president’s “the private sector is doing fine,” line three times.

In the Obama campaign’s web video, which the campaign describes as focusing on Romney’s “job elimination plan,” testimonials are heard from local and state officials describing what it was like during Romney’s governorship in Massachusetts.

“He did not care what was going on in our communities,” said John Barrett, the former mayor of North Adams, Mass., in the video.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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