President Obama will hold a series of events in the coming days to highlight the consequences of the government shutdown.
The events will hammer home the White House’s argument that it is Republicans who are preventing the government from reopening, White House aides say. They will also portray Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) as unwilling to buck a “faction” of the Republican caucus.
On Thursday, the president will appear at a local construction company that has benefited from federal loans. While there, he will highlight the real-world consequences of a shutdown, while casting blame for the crisis at the feet of House leadership.
The speech will follow a meeting Wednesday between Obama and top corporate executives, intended to force the hand of Republicans and pressure them to come to the table with a deal.
The meeting will remind the business leaders of the “consequences of the mere flirtation of default,” White House press secretary Jay Carney said on Tuesday.
On Tuesday, Obama appeared in the Rose Garden, using the bully pulpit to underscore the fact that he would not compromise on the current budget fight or the upcoming debt-ceiling clash, which White House officials say would be catastrophic to the economy.
“I will not negotiate over Congress’s responsibility to pay bills it’s already racked up,” Obama told reporters in a 20-minute statement. “I’m not going to allow anybody to drag the good name of the United States of America through the mud just to refight a settled election or extract ideological demands.”