The Hill: Obama blasts GOP ‘irresponsibility’ on budget, debt ceiling

By Justin Sink 

President Obama accused Republicans of “the height of irresponsibility” for an “unwillingness to compromise” over the budget in pointed remarks marking the fifth anniversary of the start of the financial crisis.

 “I cannot remember a time when one faction of one party promises economic chaos if it can’t get 100 percent of what it wants,” Obama said. “That’s never happened before.”

 The president’s remarks were largely overshadowed by Monday’s shooting at the Washington Navy Yard, and Obama used the opening of his remarks to condemn the “cowardly act.” But he pressed on with his case for Congress to pass a budget and debt-ceiling extension, noting Congress only “has a couple of weeks to get this done.”

Lawmakers must agree on a continuing resolution to fund the federal government by the end of September, which also marks the end of the fiscal year. If they fail to do so, the government would shut down, except for essential services.

The nation is also rapidly approaching the drop-dead date for hitting the debt ceiling, which restricts Washington’s ability to loan money and cover its payment obligations. An analysis released last week by the Bipartisan Policy Center estimated the country would hit the debt ceiling sometime between Oct. 18 and Nov. 5. 

With that in mind, the White House has looked to pivot back to the economy in recent days. 

The administration released a report late Sunday night touting the steps the president has taken to address the economic downturn. He also sat for a rare Sunday show interview with ABC News, in addition to holding the event Monday at the White House.

Obama acknowledged that “in recent weeks, much of our attention has been focused on Syria,” but said that he has remained focused on his “No. 1 priority” — the economy. He was strongly critical of Republicans, accusing them of pursuing “the kind of actions we don’t need” to maintain economic growth.

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