Faced with the looming prospect of a debt default, President Barack Obama on Saturday appealed to the Congress to pass the budget while pushing Republicans to agree to hike the borrowing limit to prevent an economic shutdown.
Lets pass a budget, put people back to work, and end this Republican shutdown. Lets pay our bills, and prevent an economic shutdown, Obama said as the government shutdown entered its 12th day.
In his weekly address to the nation, Obama outlined details of his meetings with Republican lawmakers over the past few days to resolve the unprecedented crisis.
I know youre frustrated by what you see in your nations capital right now. But because its easy to get lost in or give up on the political back-and-forth, I want you to remember: this is not normal, he said. The battle between Obama and Republicans, who control the House of Representatives, over the flagship healthcare plan dubbed Obamacare has forced the government to shutter offices and send home hundreds of thousands of workers.
Alongside the shutdown, the US is heading for a default if it does not raise its debt limit by the October 17 deadline. Our government is closed for the first time in 17 years. A political party is risking default for the first time since the 1700s. This is not normal. Thats why we have to put a stop to it. Not only because its dangerous, but because it saps everyones faith in our extraordinary system of self-government. And that hurts us all, he said.
Obama blamed the Republican Party for the current situation, saying constant brinkmanship does not let his government do a lot of things. Whether its the work of creating jobs, growing the economy, or getting our fiscal house in order for the long haul, weve got a lot of work to do and constant brinkmanship doesnt let us do it, Obama said.