U.S. President Barack Obama on Saturday in his White House weekly address called on far-right republicans in the House of Representatives to stop demanding a ransom for doing their fundamental job duty and to pass a budget “with no partisan strings attached.”
“I'll always work with anyone of either party on ways to grow this economy, create new jobs, and get our fiscal house in order for the long haul,” the President stated emphatically, adding, “But not under the shadow of these threats to our economy.”
Using two letters he has received from ordinary Americans on how this shutdown is affecting their lives, the President attempted to appeal to House republicans to pass the Senate’s six-week continuing resolution.
Though there are enough democrats and republicans in the House to pass the Senate’s budget resolution, the GOP far-right tea party caucus with House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) on their side has not allowed a floor vote on the bill.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is attempting to garner democratic and republican signatures for a discharge petition to circumvent the House Speaker and force a vote; however the earliest such a vote could be taken is October 12.
The President remarked in the address, “The American people don’t get to demand ransom in exchange for doing their job. Neither does Congress. They don’t get to hold our democracy or our economy hostage over a settled law. They don’t get to kick a child out of Head Start if I don’t agree to take her parents’ health insurance away. That’s not how our democracy is supposed to work.
“That's why I won't pay a ransom in exchange for reopening the government,” he added.
“I certainly won't pay a ransom in exchange for raising the debt ceiling. For as reckless as a government shutdown is, an economic shutdown that comes with default would be dramatically worse,” he asserted.