After a couple weeks of blasting President Obama on the campaign trail, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney finally mustered a reaction from the White House.
White House Press Secretary Jay Carney pushed back against a television ad Romney released Monday that criticizes the president for calling the slowing job growth a "bump in the road."
"I'm an American, not a bump in the road," several individuals tell the camera in Romney's ad.
Carney defended Obama's choice of words.
"'Bump in the road' is exactly what this president said," Carney said aboard Air Force One Monday. "These are common phrases in the English lexicon and I think that his meaning is clear... that we are headed in the right direction but it is not necessarily a smooth path."
But the administration's decision to engage sends a different message: Obama is feeling more and more vulnerable on the economy.
Until Monday, administration officials have refused to comment on anything that the budding field of Republican candidates does or says.