By Peter Schroeder - 08/06/11 02:47 AM EDT
House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) pointed the finger squarely at Democrats following a historic downgrade of the nation's credit rating by Standard & Poor's.
The leader of the GOP House majority touted his party's efforts to curb spending while critiquing Democratic resistance to those cuts.
"It is my hope this wake-up call will convince Washington Democrats that they can no longer afford to tinker around the edges of our long-term debt problem," he added.
While S&P dismissed the recent deal to raise the federal debt limit while cutting into the deficit as insufficient to protect its credit rating, Boehner touted the cut-heavy package as a "positive first step."
Earlier in the week, Boehner said he got "98 percent" of what he wanted in the final deal to raise the debt ceiling.
The credit rating agency also cast blame on both parties in its rationale for knocking down America's credit rating, saying the recent "political brinksmanship" over raising the debt limit caused primarily by Republicans highlighted the fact that US governance has become "less stable, less effective, and less predictable."
"The statutory debt ceiling and the threat of default have become political bargaining chips in the debate over fiscal policy," S&P wrote.