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Romney Blasts Obama On Visit To North Hollywood

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NORTH HOLLYWOOD (CBS) — Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney used a campaign appearance in North Hollywood Wednesday to continue his criticism of President Obama’s handling of the economy.

Romney, who is vying for the Republican presidential nomination, has said Obama has made both the recession and America’s recovery process worse.

“He has not created jobs,” Romney said.

“He’s lost jobs, a half a million jobs here in California. And, you know, as a president, you can’t control everything but you sure can control your use of time and what you focus your energy on, and he didn’t focus on the economy.

“… I simply don’t understand why the president is insistent on raising taxes at a time when we’re trying to put people back to work,” he said. “You recognize if government takes more money, it means less money for individuals, for families and for employers.”

Los Angeles City Councilman Paul Krekorian, who represents the area Romney visited, lashed out at the presidential hopeful for using the Valley Plaza shopping center as “an easy backdop for a cheap photo op.”

“For the people I represent, it (the center) is a glaring testament to the failed policies and economic collapse that led to its demise during the eight years of the Bush administration.”

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, a Democrat, blasted Romney in a morning conference call with reporters on behalf of the Democratic National Committee.

“The fact that Mr. Romney is using L.A., and I emphasize `using’ L.A., to blast what he sees as the president’s failed economic policies I find appalling,” Villaraigosa said. “Unfortunately, like much of the country, we’re dealing with high unemployment rates, but we need to be putting people back to work, not just pointing the finger and playing the blame game.”

The mayor went on to criticize Romney’s record as governor of Massachusetts, when Villaraigosa said that state was 47th in the nation in job creation.

Romney had an unsuccessful bid for the Republican nomination in 2008 when he was defeated by Sen. John McCain.

 (©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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