Washington, October 2 (RHC)-- U.S. President Barack Obama has strongly criticized Republicans for a government shutdown, saying Republicans should not be able to hold the entire economy "hostage."
During a speech in the White House Rose Garden on Tuesday, Obama said: "They've shut down the government over an ideological crusade to deny affordable health insurance to millions of Americans."
The U.S. president made the remarks after the Republican-led House of Representatives made funding for government operations for the new fiscal year contingent on defunding, delaying or dismantling President Obama's healthcare law.
Obama also called on the Republicans to reopen the government quickly. He warned that if the shutdown continues, it will make it more difficult to recruit people for government jobs. According to some estimates, over 800,000 federal employees face unpaid leave with no guarantee of back pay when the deadlock is over while other estimates say upwards of one million workers face unpaid leave.
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