Obama Blames Congress for Downgrade, Calls for Tax Hikes

President Obama said today that the U.S. lost its AAA credit rating because analysts “doubted our political system’s ability to act,” and Congress must respond with a debt plan that includes taxes as well as budget cuts.

Seeking to calm markets, Obama said the financial system remains strong, and will get stronger with a “balanced” debt reduction plan that asks wealthy Americans to pay their fair share.

Making his first public comments since Standard and Poor’s announced the downgrade on Friday night, Obama also he will soon be making recommendations to a special congressional committee assigned to look for debt reduction of $1.5 trillion over ten years.

“My hope is that Friday’s news will give us a renewed sense of urgency,” Obama said during brief remarks at the White House.

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