The co-chairman of President Barack Obama's deficit reduction commission says Congress has to "face up" to a red-ink problem that threatens America's future.

Democrat Erskine Bowles tells ABC's "Good Morning America," that he and Republican co-chairman Alan Simpson recommended sharp spending cuts because "the path we're on is unsustainable. The debt we are building up is like a cancer."

The pair endorsed a series of proposals, including raising the Social Security retirement age and slashing the home mortgage interest deduction, to slash the deficit by $4 trillion over the next decade.

President Barack Obama initially was noncommital, calling for a close review of the report. But the recommendations drew harsh criticism from members of both parties.