Mitt Romney at Solyndra in Fremont, Calif.

Mitt Romney at Solyndra in Fremont, Calif. (KTLA-TV / May 31, 2012)

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. -- A confident-sounding Mitt Romney mocked his rival's campaign Friday, hours after the release of disappointing jobs numbers put Democrats on the defensive.

At a fund-raiser at the Balboa Bay Club in Newport Beach, Romney joked about a visit former President George Bush made to the White House a day earlier.

Four tickets to the cocktail reception at country club fetched as much as $25,000.

Romney quipped that Bush must have felt he was on hostile territory, and accused President Obama of trying to pin all the country's economic problems on his predecessor.

"The president, of course, when bad news comes out, looks around for someone to blame," he said of Obama, according to pool reports.

He then added of Bush's visit: "I'm sure he had to duck. Because President Bush is always the one they point to. It's all his fault. I'm afraid that's worn a little thin."

Bush and his wife Laura had joined President Obama for the unveiling of The Bushes' official portrait at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. Thursday.

At his Los Angeles area fund-raiser, Romney continued on to say that voters should now hold Obama responsible for the nation's economic situation.

"The president's spokesman today said this recession was long in the making and it won't be overcome overnight," Romney said. "Forty months is not overnight."

Mindful of his audience in a state that reliably elects Democrats, Romney made the case that attendees' financial support could help him compete in the handful of swing states that will likely determine the outcome in November.

"I know that California's a hard state for a Republican to win. If I won California, why, we'd won in a landslide, you know that," he said. "So I'm hoping to win California, but I'm aiming to win those key swing states. And one of the things you can do is help people help me."

Romney attended a $50,000 per couple fundraiser on Thursday night in Beverly Crest at the home of billionaire Anthony Pritzker.

Pritzker, who is an heir to the Hyatt Hotel fortune, has a net worth of $2.6 billion and is 155th on the list of wealthiest people in the U.S., according to Forbes.

Pritzker's sister Penny is the national finance chair for President Barack Obama.

In addition to campaign cash, Romney picked up a valuable endorsement from former first lady Nancy Reagan.

Romney and his wife, Ann, visited Mrs. Reagan at her Los Angeles home, where she served them lemonade and cookies.

She said that her "Ronnie" would have liked Romney's business background and what she called his "strong principles."

In a statement issued after the Romneys' visit, Mrs. Reagan said she believes Romney has the experience and leadership skills that "our country so desperately needs."

Earlier on Thursday, Romney made a secretive visit to the shuttered headquarters of Solyndra in Northern California.

The solar energy firm went bankrupt after receiving a $535-million loan guarantee approved by the Obama administration.

"It's a symbol not of success but of failure. It's also a symbol of a serious conflict of interest," Romney told reporters, reiterating a Republican charge that the firm received the loan guarantee because one of its largest investors was a major fundraiser for Obama.

"Free enterprise to the president means taking money from the taxpayers and giving it freely to his friends," Romney said.

Romney also accused the Obama campaign of sending in hecklers to disrupt his speeches.

"At many of the events I go to, there are large groups of, if you will, Obama supporters there heckling me," Romney said.

"If they're gonna be heckling us, we're not gonna sit back and play by very different rules. If the president's gonna have his people come into my rallies and heckle me, we'll show him that we conservatives have the same kind of capacity he does."