President Obama’s top campaign strategist said Sunday that the country needs to “accelerate” job creation in the private sector — by hiring more teachers, police and firefighters.

David Axelrod made the comment as he continued to perform damage control for the president, who said Friday during a press conference that the private sector’s “doing fine.” But Axelrod drew rapid-fire ridicule from conservatives, after he called for more public-sector hiring to address private-sector economic issues.

“The private sector, we need to accelerate job creation in the private sector,” Axelrod told CNN’s “State of the Union,” before adding: “One of the ways that we can do that is putting teachers and firefighters and police back to work because those are good middle-class jobs.”

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