US House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and her fellow Democrats urged Republicans on Thursday to reopen the federal government and not to blend shutdown with debt ceiling.
"Today marks the third day of the federal government shutdown," said Pelosi at a press conference, adding that "I'm concerned that Republicans are trying to buy time in order to tie the shutdown of government to the default on the full faith and credit of the United States."
The US Treasury has indicated that the debt ceiling will be reached on Oct. 17, warning in a report on Thursday "In the event that a debt limit impasse were to lead to a default, it could have a catastrophic effect on not just financial markets but also on job creation, consumer spending and economic growth."
But House Republicans insisted that government funding for the current fiscal year beginning on Oct. 1 should be tied to a delay in the Affordable Health Care Act, also known as Obamacare.
Obamacare "is the law and upheld by the Supreme Court," told Barbara Lee, a Democratic working in the House appropriations committee, told Xinhua Thursday, adding "You cannot negotiate around something that is a law."
Republicans should not use the shutdown and default as a threat or leverage, Jim McDermott, another Democratic working in the House Ways and Means Committee, told Xinhua.
With the gesture to relieve hundreds of thousands of federal workers on furlough, House Majority leader Eric Cantor vowed Thursday to bring forward piecemeal spending bills, targeting high- profile areas of the government impacted by the shutdown, such as national parks and veterans' benefits.
Republicans cannot cherry pick because the legislation has " oneness," and "If you pick out one part...it upsets the balance," said Pelosi, adding "These games have to stop."
Pelosi also reminded Republicans not to repeat the unnecessary bitter fight back in 2011 when the impact of the last debt limit crisis led to lower consumer confidence, falling stock markets, slowing growth and credit rating downgraded.