Now, we know.
It was a bloody day.
98% of of today’s volume was sold in declining stocks. The Dow today closed at 634 points in the negative – the seventh worst point drop in United States history.
While opinions on the reliability of S&P and other credit rating agencies go back and forth, the reality that our federal government has spent the U.S. into oblivion is undeniable. The rate at which our debt is increasing measured against our GDP, and the current political atmosphere, were factors in our historical, first-ever credit downgrade.
Obama was mum on S&P all weekend; he emerged today to deliver a flat, teleprompter speech. The Dow was down 400 points before Obama spoke. Ten minutes after he finished, the market plummeted another 200 points.
Mitt Romney spoke on the S&P downgrade while delivering a speech in Concord, NH this morning:
“This nation is going to have to get very serious about the excesses of government.” ~ Mitt Romney (August 8, 2011)
A look back…
● April 18, 2011 – Romney tells Hannity (FOX News): “The Obama presidency was downgraded today. And people recognize that this president is playing chicken with the U.S. economy… But if the interest costs are going up why it could be devastating to the U.S. economy and could make job growth even more difficult.”
● April 18, 2011 – Obama’s chief economic adviser, Austan Goolsbee, says, “I don’t make too much about it.”
● April 20, 2011 – Romney on San Diego station KCBQ: Obama should meet the raters. (Massachusetts received credit rating upgrades from both Standard & Poor’s and Fitch Ratings while Romney was governor.)
“Standard and Poor’s, one of the rating agencies, just downgraded their view of the future for America. If you will, they downgraded the Obama presidency. In my own view, this is not something to be laughed off as the president’s people seem to be doing. The president really ought to personally sit down and meet with S&P. I did that when I was governor; I met with the ratings agencies and talked about our future and tried to instill confidence in our future because, look, how they rate our debt and how they rate our future as a nation will affect the interest costs that we end up paying and will affect homeowners and borrowers all over the country.”
● April 25, 2011 – The Gov’s op-ed WARNING about S&P downgrade
The main job of any executive — whether a CEO, a governor or a President — should be to avert these dangers, or work to repair them. When I took office in Massachusetts, we faced job losses and a fiscal crisis that had the potential to shake the faith of the credit raters in our bonds. We went to work to convince S&P and the other rating agencies that we were committed to reducing spending to balance our budget. I met personally with these officials in my office in Boston, and I traveled to New York City to meet them in their offices. S&P responded in 2005 with a credit rating upgrade that acknowledged the state’s sound fiscal management and the improving strength of its revitalized economy.
Barack Obama is facing a financial emergency on a grander scale. Yet his approach has been to engage in one of the biggest spending binges in American history [since World War II]. With its failed stimulus package, its grandiose new social programs, its fervor for more taxes and government regulations, and its hostility toward business, the administration has made the debt problem worse, hindered economic recovery and needlessly cost American workers countless jobs.
(emphasis added) Read more here.
● June 29 -30, July 14, 2011 – Romney speaks on debt-ceiling debate
● July 14, 2011 – Romney also speaks on debt ceiling at Town Hall meeting in Derry, NH
● August 1, 2011 – Additional statement on debt ceiling from Romney
“As president, my plan would have produced a budget that was cut, capped and balanced – not one that opens the door to higher taxes and puts defense cuts on the table. President Obama’s leadership failure has pushed the economy to the brink at the eleventh hour and 59th minute. While I appreciate the extraordinarily difficult situation President Obama’s lack of leadership has placed Republican Members of Congress in, I personally cannot support this deal.” ~ Mitt Romney
● August 6, 2011 – Romney’s Response to S&P Downgrade: USA Credit Rating Latest Obama Casualty
Obama will go down in history as the first president to lose America’s Triple A credit rating. When he took office, the U.S. was spending 40% of GDP on federal debt. Last year we were spending 62%. By the end of this year, we’ll have spent 72%. Even if we get all the cuts outlined in the debt-ceiling agreement, we’ll be spending 76% of GDP in 10 years.
This was a horrible day for America.
This was a horrible, no good, rotten day for Obama.
Mitt Romney 2012.
P.S. Obama isn’t worried, though. He has planned an October 2012 surprise…
FROM “MALAISE” TO MELTDOWN
August 8, 2011
Under Governor Romney, Massachusetts received credit rating upgrades from both Standard & Poor’s and Fitch Ratings.
In March 2005, Standard & Poor’s upgraded Massachusetts’ general obligation bond rating to “AA,” noting the state was “again producing jobs and reducing already historically low unemployment.” The Boston Globe reported:
“In many ways, Massachusetts is emerging from the downturn in good shape. … In recognition of the improvement, Standard & Poor’s in March upgraded the state’s bond rating to AA, the highest ranking the state has enjoyed since the late 1980s. … ‘An economy that is deep and diverse is again producing jobs and reducing already historically low unemployment,’ Standard & Poor’s wrote in its upgrade of the state’s bond rating.”
In July 2005, Fitch Ratings upgraded Massachusetts’ general obligation bond rating to “AA,” citing the state’s “prudent fiscal management.”
“Fitch Ratings upgrades the rating of $14.4 billion Commonwealth of Massachusetts full faith and credit general obligation (GO) bonds to ‘AA’ from ‘AA-‘. The upgrade reflects the commonwealth’s economic recovery, enabling surplus operations and the rebuilding of reserves to strong levels. Prudent financial management through the recent downturn has positioned Massachusetts well.”
► Jayde Wyatt