Critics hit Romney job-creation record

Cite workers that left Massachusetts

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“If we pursue the policies I’ve just described, you’re going to see a Michigan with rising home values. Your kids will come out of college and find jobs that are consistent with their skills. Businesses will come here because of your unparalleled workforce. And Michigan will once again be known as an engine of innovation,” he said.

Mr. Romney’s unemployment-rate claims have largely gone untested here in the run-up to election day, but he has faced some blowback from the United Auto Workers (UAW) over his opposition to the auto bailouts that some now credit with helping General Motors to post record profits this month.

Michael Heaney, University of Michigan political scientist, said that most voters are smart enough to realize that politicians, including Mr. Romney and President Obama, tend to embellish their records, while stretching the truth about how much control they have over the economy.

“The whole idea that Romney was responsible for good or bad things in Massachusetts is fallacious — just as it is fallacious that any executive is responsible for the ups and downs of the economy,” Mr. Heaney said. “I think people sort of tune out of the debate at that level. Romney is still going to get points with the Republican grass roots for being a businessman.”

Romney still wins among the people who say they would kind of like a businessman to be president, even if he is not really responsible for economic growth in Massachusetts, because nobody really is, especially at the state level,” he said.

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