Obama: Debt deal is only a first step

August 2, 2011 - 12:15 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama says the emergency bill Congress passed to prevent a government default is just the first step to ensuring the country lives within its means.

Speaking in the Rose Garden, Obama says lawmakers still need to find a balanced approach to reducing the deficit that includes some adjustments to Medicare and reforming the tax code so the wealthy pay more.

Obama spoke shortly after the Senate passed the bill to raise the debt ceiling and avert a potentially catastrophic default. The House approved the bill Monday.

The White House says Obama will sign the bill as soon as it lands on his desk.