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Geithner calls Romney claim of female job losses 'ridiculous'

April 15, 2012|By Matea Gold
  • Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner.
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. (Manuel Balce Ceneta )

WASHINGTON -- Top Obama administration aides pushed back Sunday against a charge by Republican presidential challenger Mitt Romney that women have suffered the brunt of the weak economy during the president’s tenure.

Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner called Romney’s claim that women have accounted for 92% of the jobs lost since Obama took office “ridiculous and very misleading.”

“It's a meaningless way to look at the basic contours of the economy,” Geithner told Bob Schieffer on CBS’ “Face the Nation,” adding that male-dominated industries such as construction and manufacturing were drained of jobs when the recession began underPresident George W. Bush.

“It's just a political moment,” he said of Romney’s comments. “You know there's the quality of political debate, you know, about economic policy is really terrible. It's not surprising given it's a campaign, but we have to govern in facts and, you know, the debate we should be having is, again, what's the right policies to make the economy stronger?”

Politifact, a nonpartisan fact check organization, has rated Romney’s claim that 92% of job losses have hit women as “mostly false.”

Gene Sperling, director of the White House National Economic Council, said Sunday that even though job creation numbers in March were lower than expected, the economy is adding jobs at a faster pace than it did in 2011, when 2.1 million private sector jobs were created.

“What you’re really having is very solid private sector job creation,” he told CNN’s Fareed Zakaria. “The problem’s obvious. We started in a very, very deep hole and when you are starting from a hole, from the worst recession since the Great Depression, you’ve got a long way back.”

Republican leaders rejected that, saying President Obama has failed to do enough to rejuvenate the economy. They dismissed as a stunt Obama’s renewed calls for Congress to pass the "Buffett rule," which would impose a minimum tax on millionaires.

“This is Obama's strategy: Look over here at this shiny object here,” Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus told CNN’s Candy Crowley. “Don't look at the big picture, an economy on the brink that I didn't do a thing about and made things worse. That's what this is about.”

matea.gold@latimes.com

Original source: Geithner calls Romney claim of female job losses 'ridiculous'

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