Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell (R), a potential vice president pick for Mitt Romney, reluctantly admitted on CNN's "State of the Union" Sunday morning that President Obama's policies helped to dig Virginia out of the recession.
“Did [the stimulus] help us in the short-run with health care and education and spending to balance the budget? Sure,” he told host Candy Crowley. “Does it help us in the long-term to really cut the unemployment rate? I’d say no.”
Asked whether the president "deserves a tiny bit of credit" for Virginia's better-than-average economy, McDonnell responded, "Well, sure. I think there are national policies that have had some impact.”
But McDonnell was quick to take most of the credit for Virginia's success, despite the hurdles of what he calls Obama's "overburdensome regulations."
“There’s something going on with Republican-governed states," he said. "Seven out of the 10 states nationwide, Candy, that have the lowest unemployment rates: Republican governor states.”
Other Romney surrogates and advisors stuck closer to his campaign's message during the Sunday political shows, jumping on Friday's dismal jobs report as evidence of Obama's policy failures. Romney’s senior campaign advisor, Ed Gillespie, called Obama's economic policies "hostile to job creators" on "Fox News Sunday."
“This is a hostile environment for job creation in our economy," said Gillespie, a former chairman of the Republican National Committee. "And that's why, frankly, it adds a sense of urgency in terms of this year's election to be able to turn things around because the only thing that's going to change it are changing the policies and that means changing the person in the White House."
Steven Rattner, the Obama administration's former "car czar," defended Obama over the sputtering economy on "Fox News Sunday," noting that that the president has added four million jobs since January 2010 and that the economy would be much worse off without his actions. “Nobody is happy with the level of job creation today, but I believe without the policies the president put in place, we wouldn’t have even this level of job creation today," he said.