The State Column 
Aug 9, 2011
Republican presidential candidate and Texas Rep. Ron Paul joined his son, Kentucky U.S. Senator Rand Paul, Monday, saying the recent decision by Standard and Poor’s to downgrade the credit rating of the U.S. is not the fault of the Tea Party.
“This attempt to scapegoat folks who recognize that our debt is out of control and that we must change course should not be tolerated,” the elder Paul said in a statement released Monday. “They are simply demanding that Washington do its job.”
The Texas Republican, who is campaigning in Iowa ahead of a key poll out of Ames, said Democrats were using the credit downgrade as an attempt to score political points.
“We were downgraded because of years of reckless spending, not because concerned Americans demanded we get our finances in order. The Washington establishment has spent us into near default and now a downgrade, and here they are again trying to escape responsibility for their negligence in handling the economy,” Mr. Paul said.
- A d v e r t i s e m e n t
Mr. Paul’s assertion comes just twenty-four hours after former White House adviser David Axelrod slammed the political movement, saying it was largely responsible for the political impasse in Congress, which S&P ultimately cited as the key reason for issuing the downgrade.
“The fact of the matter is that this is essentially a Tea Party downgrade,” Mr. Axelrod said Sunday. “That clearly is on the backs of those who were willing to see the country default.”
Mr. Paul joined Republican presidential candidates in condemning President Obama’s role in the downgrade, saying the economic policies put in place under his administration added to the credit rating agency’s concerns.
Still, President Obama and the White House defended their policies, calling on Congress to focus on job creation and revamping the nation’s economy.
“Our problems are eminently solvable,” Mr. Obama said, adding that investors are worried by “a lack of political will in Washington.”
“No matter what some agency may say, we have always been and always will be a triple-A country,” the president added.
Mr. Paul’d defense of the Tea Party followed a down day on Wall Street. The Dow lost 635 points Monday as concerns over U.S. growth persisted. Investors also expressed concerns with the euro-zone debt crisis, which continues to plague Spain, Italy and Greece.