Candidates made the same arguments they'd made for months. President Barack Obama barely mentioned Friday's weak jobs numbers and said he's leading a recovery from an economic hole he didn't create. Mitt Romney said the president has not done enough to help the economy over three and a half years.
The lofty rhetoric on display at the party conventions in Tampa and Charlotte the past two weeks gave way within hours to more familiar campaign attacks at events in New Hampshire, Iowa and Nevada.

Sure, the president worked in a reference to the ۳۰th straight month of private sector job growth during a New Hampshire stump speech, but the thrust of his remarks echoed what he’d said the night before at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N. C.

“Last night, I did my best to lay out the stakes in this election, ” he said. “You see, now that both sides have made their argument, there’s a big choice to make. And I honestly believe this is the biggest choice, the clearest choice, of any time in our generation, because it’s not just a choice between two candidates or two political parties. It is a choice between two different paths for America — two fundamentally different visions for how we move forward. ”

GOP rival Mitt Romney would hardly allow him to get away with that.

The former Massachusetts governor continued laying the blame on Obama for failing to follow through on the inspiration that fueled his ۲۰۰۸ campaign, the theme of last week’s Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla.

“There’s almost nothing the president has done in the past three and a half, four years that gives the American people confidence that he knows what he’s doing when it comes to jobs and the economy, ” Romney told reporters in Sioux City, Iowa.

The day had the feel of the early primaries, with Obama and Romney each planning stops in Iowa and New Hampshire. Each would hit areas traditionally partial to their side: Obama with an afternoon rally at the University of Iowa here and on New Hampshire’s more liberal Seacoast and Romney in the epicenter of Iowa’s conservative west, and in Nashua, N. H.

Romney’s running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan, spoke before a crowd in Sparks, Nev., where he called the jobs report “pretty disappointing news. ”

In Portsmouth, N. H., Obama campaigned for the first time this year with both his wife Michelle and Vice President Joe Biden. He acknowledged the jobs numbers — and pledged to do better, but said only his policies would get the country moving faster.

“Today we learned that after losing around ۸۰۰,۰۰۰ jobs a month when I took office, business once again added jobs for the ۳۰th month in a row, ” Obama said. “But that’s not good enough. We know it’s not good enough. We need to create more jobs, faster. ”

After flicking at the jobs figures, Obama returned to the convention theme that Romney is offering retrograde policies. After naming him only once Thursday night while speaking to a national television audience, Obama name - checked Romney with zeal, saying he would offer the same prescription no matter what the country’s ills.

“Tax cuts when times are good, tax cuts when times are bad, ” Obama said. “Tax cuts to help you lose a few extra pounds. Tax cuts to improve your love life. It’ll cure anything, according to them. ”

At his event in Orange City, the seat of Sioux County, Iowa’s most politically and culturally conservative county, Romney accused Obama both of offering “new promises” and of not offering Americans a new plan during his nomination acceptance address.