White House fights credit rating downgrade 

The White House is fighting a rating agency's assessment that the United States will not be able to reach a bipartisan agreement on raising the debt ceiling and reducing long-term deficit.

"The debt ceiling will be raised," White House Spokesman Jay Carney said Monday. "We will do that. That will happen."

Carney made the remarks after Standard & Poor's decided Monday to keep the U.S. credit rating at triple A but downgrade the country's economic outlook from "stable" to "negative."

"We simply believe that the prospects are better," Carney said in defense of a president who campaigned as a antidote for Washington's political gridlock. "We think that the political process will outperform [Standard and Poor's] expectations."

The Administration is exerting such confidence in part to bat away market speculation that could be damaging to the nascent economic recovery, as the July deadline to raise the debt cieling quickly approaches.

"More than two years after the beginning of the recent crisis, U.S. policymakers have still not agreed on how to reverse recent fiscal deterioration or address longer-term fiscal pressures," S&P analyst Nikola Swann said in a statement.

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