Romney in 'dramatic' economy call

Republican presidential challenger Mitt Romney has declared America's central bank, the Federal Reserve, should not take on yet another attempt to stimulate the struggling economy and instead called for "something dramatic".

But the former Massachusetts governor did not say precisely what that would be.

As Mr Romney and President Barack Obama head towards the November election, polling shows the contest will be decided by a razor-thin margin with voters casting ballots primarily on their views of which candidate can create more jobs and boost the laggard US economic recovery.

"I can absolutely make the case that now is the time for something dramatic, and it is not the time to grow government. It's the time to create the incentives and the opportunities for entrepreneurs and businesses big and small to hire more people and that's going to happen," Mr Romney said in a CNN interview.

Both candidates were absent from the campaign trail on Sunday. Mr Obama was at the Camp David presidential retreat for a rest during celebrations for his 51st birthday and Mr Romney was at his lakeside retreat in New Hampshire.

On Sunday the Romney campaign released a television advertisement highlighting his recent trip to Israel, in which he criticises Mr Obama for not visiting the Jewish state. The President last visited Israel during his 2008 campaign.

While in Israel, Mr Romney said that cultural differences helped explain the economic disparity between Israelis and Palestinians, without acknowledging economic restrictions Palestinians faced. The comment prompted accusations of racism from Palestinian leaders.

Mr Romney said repeatedly last week that his economic policies would create 12 million jobs in his first term. Pushed to explain how, he said in the interview: "That's what happens in a normal process. When you come out of the kind of recession we've had you should see this kind of job creation. Good things happen when you have a private sector that's thriving."

Mr Romney so far has been slow to release specifics for his economic plans. He repeated his opposition to Mr Obama's tax plan that would preserve tax cuts passed in the George Bush era for Americans earning less than 250,000 dollars a year. The rate for those earning above that figure would see tax rates increase to levels in effect during the Bill Clinton administration in the 1990s. Mr Romney would preserve the tax cuts for everyone, although he has not said how he would pay for the plan.

Mr Obama contends the Romney plan would end up saving huge amounts for the wealthy and require greater taxes for middle-income Americans to offset the changes.