Mitt Romney Defends Bain Capital, Hits Obama Over Auto Bailout

Romney Defends Bain While Attacking Obama Over Auto Bailout

After the Obama campaign and Priorities USA Action, a pro-Obama super PAC, targeted Mitt Romney this week over his tenure at Bain Capital, the former Massachusetts governor dismissed the attacks as "off target" and again asserted that he had helped create "over 100,000 jobs."

"They said, oh, gosh, Gov. Romney at Bain Capital closed down a steel factory. But the problem, of course, is that the steel factory closed down two years after I left Bain Capital," Romney said Wednesday in an interview with conservative blogger Ed Morrissey, referring to the closure of GST Steel's Kansas City plant in 2001.

He went on, "One is that we were able to help create over 100,000 jobs and secondly, on the president’s watch, about 100,000 jobs were lost in the auto industry, in auto dealers and auto manufacturers."

The claim that Romney helped create more than 100,000 jobs is difficult to prove. The campaign has said the figure comes from current statistics on three companies that Romney helped start or expand -- Staples (89,000 jobs), Sports Authority (15,000 jobs) and Domino's (7,900 jobs). However, the companies themselves, as opposed to Romney and Bain, may be responsible for the actual job creation since Bain's initial investment. The figure also does not include companies -- like GST Steel, which the Obama campaign and super PAC are highlighting -- where jobs were lost.

Meanwhile, the auto industry has actually gained jobs under the Obama administration. In January 2009, 690,700 people were employed, a figure that dipped to 624,400 in June 2009, but then rose to 763,800 by April 2012, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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