Martin O'Malley says GOP wants default, higher unemployment

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The head of the Democratic Governors Association is accusing GOP debt negotiators in Washington of trying to damage the economy so President Barack Obama will lose next year's election.

Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley tells The Associated Press that Republicans are trying to steer the government toward default or higher unemployment so voters will blame Obama for a bad economy.

A Republican spokesman calls O'Malley's remarks a partisan rant.

He says moderate Republicans should call on GOP congressional leaders to make a deal to raise the government's borrowing limit before an Aug. 2 deadline to avoid a federal default.

O'Malley spoke on the sidelines of the National Governors Association meeting in Salt Lake City.