S&P downgrades US credit rating

WASHINGTON (AP) ? After the first-ever down grade of the nation’s credit rating, the White House says President Barack Obama thinks it’s clear Washington “must do better” in tackling the deficit.

The statement from his spokesman, Jay Carney, didn’t directly refer to Friday’s move by Standard & Poor’s to lower its AAA credit rating for the U.S. government. But it said the talks that led to this week’s deal on hiking the borrowing limit “took too long” and were “at times too divisive.”

The deal mandated $1 trillion in deficit cuts over 10 years, and set up a special committee of Congress find over $1 trillion more. Carney said Obama will press that committee to put the nation’s interests over “political and ideological” divides.