President Obama on Tuesday dismissed the notion that he doesn't fully grasp the scale of economic anxiety in the U.S., calling the idea that he was calm about joblessness "nonsense."
The president rejected the suggestion that Americans think he should be angrier about the poor state of the economy, and strongly asserted that he understands the struggles facing many households because of the slow recovery.
"The notion somehow that I'm calm about that is nonsense," Obama said in an interview on NBC's "Today" show. "But what is true is that as president my job is to make sure that I am finding every good idea we can to move the country forward."
Republicans challenging Obama for his job in 2012 have suggested that the president is insensitive to job losses; former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (R) seized Monday in a Web video on comments Obama made calling May's poor economic figures "bumps on the road to recovery."
"I don't think people are asking that; I think some in the press might be asking that," Obama said in response to a question about why he isn't angrier. "I think ordinary folks understand that I spend all my time thinking about this stuff because I'm talking to these folks every single day."