WASHINGTON, Oct. 20 (Xinhua)-- Tumultuous weeks of government shutdown and default risks proved to be costly to the U.S. economy, but the country will be resilient enough to withstand the blow, said U.S. Treasury Secretary on Sunday.
"We learned in 2011 that when you get close to the edge, it does do some damage. But we have a resilient economy. I am confident that our economy can recover," said Jacob Lew in an interview that aired Sunday on NBC's "Meet the Press".
"We did see our borrowing costs go up in the short term. We know that from the shutdown there was a loss of economic activity, " Lew said. "We need to make sure the government does not go through another round of brinkmanship. This can never happen again. "
Lew blamed some House Republicans for the stalemate that resulted in the partial government shutdown and default threat, saying "there was a faction, particularly in the House, who took control of some of the direction of this debate."
He also noted that the deep spending cuts that are part of sequestration are holding back the economy. "The President has made clear that we think you should replace some of the sequestration cuts with sensible, balanced entitlement and tax reforms to put us in the right direction for the future."
The Treasury Secretary added that fiscal policy would not be the only focus of Obama administration as "there is a lot that we need to do to build and grow this economy," listing infrastructure, immigration reform and farm bill as priorities.
Asked about the bumpy rollout of Obama's signature health care reform, Lew said the administration will fix technical glitches in the online health care insurance exchanges, the heart of the Obamacare project, which were launched on October 1.
House Republicans had predicted for months that Obamacare would be a "train wreck" with error-ridden online exchanges and defective design.
Lew said the real test for the insurance exchanges would come in January when the actual coverage starts for people who have enrolled by Dec. 15.
"The test is: are people getting coverage and are they getting the care that they need," said Lew. "We're confident we're going to be on track to do that."