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Barack Obama
President Barack Obama speaks in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, Thursday, Oct. 17, 2013. Lawmakers Wednesday voted to avoid a financial default and reopen the government after a 16-day partial shutdown. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Obama Says Shutdown Damaged US Economy



WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama says the government shutdown "inflicted unnecessary damage" to the U.S. economy and damaged America's credibility around the world.

Obama spoke from the White House hours after signing legislation to reopen the government following 16 days of a partial shutdown.


 

The deal came the night before the nation's debt limit was facing a breach.

Obama said while "these twin threats to our economy have now been lifted," the shutdown slowed economic growth.

Obama says the way that business is done in Washington has to change.

Obama says now that the shutdown is over, leaders in Washington should focus on a budget, immigration reform and a farm bill.

Obama laid out his agenda the morning after signing a bill reopening the government and averting a default.

He says the first focus should be on reaching a budget agreement. Congressional negotiators starting discussing that issue Thursday.

Obama says both parties should pursue a budget that lowers deficits, invests in education and infrastructure, cuts unnecessary spending and closes corporate loopholes.

Obama also says Congress should finish an immigration bill by the end of the year. An overhaul passed the Senate but stalled in the House.

Obama's third priority is to pass an overdue farm bill. The House and Senate are at odds on that issue, too.


 


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