Washington (CNN) – Republican presidential candidates issued harsh criticism of President Barack Obama Friday after the credit rating agency Standard and Poor’s announced it was downgrading America’s long-term debt status.
“America’s creditworthiness just became the latest casualty in President Obama’s failed record of leadership on the economy,” Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney said in a statement. “Standard & Poor’s rating downgrade is a deeply troubling indicator of our country’s decline under President Obama. His failed policies have led to high unemployment, skyrocketing deficits, and now, the unprecedented loss of our nation’s prized AAA credit rating.”
The Obama administration cites a calculation error by Standard and Poor’s for the downgrade, saying the firm was off by $2 trillion dollars in their calculation of America’s debt. The agency says that it based its downgrade partially on the country’s charged political climate.
Rep. Michele Bachmann echoed Romney in her statement, saying the downgrade reflects the president’s “failed economic policies.”
“This president has destroyed the credit rating of the United States,” Bachmann said.
Bachmann continued, “I call on the president to seek the immediate resignation of Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and to submit a plan with a list of cuts to balance the budget this year, turn our economy around and put Americans back to work."
Former Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman said the downgrade was a sign that Washington needed new leadership.
“We need new leadership in Washington committed to fiscal responsibility, a balanced budget, and job-friendly policies to get America working again,” Huntsman said.
Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum slammed the Obama administration for not taking more responsibility for America’s economic woes.
“I understand the U.S. Treasury is going back to Standard and Poor’s to say that a two trillion dollar mathematical error by S&P contributed to the downgrade,” Santorum said in a statement. “So, in addition to blaming President Bush for all of its problems, now the White House is blaming S&P – but this happened on the President's watch – and he has to deal with it.”