10/08/2011 06:46 EDT | Updated 12/08/2011 05:12 EST

Obama, Republicans spar over jobs bill in weekend messages

WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama is appealing to voters to support his nearly $450 billion jobs bill and tell their elected representatives about it.

With the economy listless and unemployment stuck above nine per cent, Obama is lobbying aggressively against Republican opposition to the bill.

In his weekly radio and Internet address, Obama says failure to act means even weaker growth and fewer jobs.

He says "any senator out there who's thinking about voting against this jobs bill needs to explain why."

In the Republican address, South Dakota Sen. John Thune called the bill "nothing but a rehash of the same failed ideas he's already tried, combined with a huge tax increase."

He calls Obama's proposal a "cynical ploy" designed to get the president reelected.