|U.S. President Barack Obama delivers a speech in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington D.C., the United States, Oct. 17, 2013. Barack Obama said on Thursday that political brinkmanship in last few weeks inflicted unnecessary damage to the economy. (Xinhua/Zhang Jun)
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WASHINGTON, Oct. 17 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Barack Obama said on Thursday that political brinkmanship in the past few weeks inflicted unnecessary damage to the economy.
"There are no winners here," Obama told a press conference at the White House hours after he signed into law a hastily arranged bill to end a 16-day government shutdown and avert a historic debt default.
"These last few weeks have inflicted completely unnecessary damage on our economy. We don't know yet the full scope of the damage, but every analyst out there believes it slowed our growth, " he added.
After weeks of partisan battles, both houses of Congress approved the short-term bill late Wednesday to raise the debt ceiling and reopen the federal government, heading off a catastrophic default and putting an end to the first partial government shutdown in 17 years.
Obama said the crisis-driven governing of the country should be changed, urging lawmakers to find a balanced approach to make a responsible budget that grows economy faster and shrinks long-term deficits further.
"We shouldn't approach this process of creating a budget as an ideological exercise," he said. "The issue's not growth versus fiscal responsibility. We need both. We need a budget that deals with the issue that most Americans are focused on: creating more good jobs that pay better wages."
Obama placed emphasis on cutting unnecessary tax loopholes and freeing up resources for education, infrastructure and research which would help grow the U.S. economy.
He also called for efforts to fix the immigration system and pass a farm bill. "Passing a budget, immigration reform, farm bill. Those are three specific things that would make a huge difference in our economy right now. And we could get them done by the end of the year if our focus is on what's good for the American people."
Sending a message to those who look ahead for the next partisan battle, Obama said both sides should not fail to act on areas that they do agree or could agree, just because the extremes in the parties don't want to compromise.
"There's no good reason why we can't govern responsibly, despite our differences, without lurching from manufactured crisis to manufactured crisis," he added.