press trust of india
Washington, 4 October
President Barack Obama today cancelled his trip to Asia to attend two key summits due to the US government shutdown that entered its fourth day even as efforts to break the political standoff between Republicans and Democrats over the budget failed to make any headway.
Mr Obama had already shortened the trip from four countries to two after the US government partially shut down as the two houses of Congress failed to agree on a new budget.
“Due to the government shutdown, President Obama’s travel to Indonesia and Brunei has been cancelled. The President made this decision based on the difficulty in moving forward with foreign travel in the face of a shutdown, and his determination to continue pressing his case that Republicans should immediately allow a vote to reopen the government,” White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said in a statement.
Mr Obama was scheduled to depart for Indonesia for Asia Pacific Economic Conference tomorrow and then head to Brunei for the East Asia Summit.
“The cancellation of this trip is another consequence of the House Republicans forcing a shutdown of the government,” Mr Carney said.
“This completely avoidable shutdown is setting back our ability to create jobs through promotion of US exports and advance US leadership and interests in the largest emerging region in the world,” he said.
Republican efforts to resolve the fiscal standoff that has closed much of the federal government heated up on the fourth day of the shutdown, with new talks over a broad budget deal and an effort by more moderate House members to break the logjam.
There were signs however, that some lawmakers were willing to work together to end the dispute. About 20 Republicans and Democrats signed on to a proposal that would reopen the government, finance it for six months and repeal the health care law’s tax on medical devices, a provision that has bipartisan opposition.
‘US crisis critical’: Terming the current debt crisis in America as “mission-critical”, the IMF has warned the USA that its impending debt crisis could damage not only its domestic economy, but the entire global economy. “The ongoing political uncertainty over the budget and the debt ceiling does not help … but failure to raise the debt ceiling would be far worse, and could very seriously damage not only the US economy, but the entire global economy,” IMF managing director Christine Lagarde, said.