Monday's mass shooting just a few miles from the U.S. Capitol and White House didn't stop President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner from exchanging political jabs over the ensuing spending and debt limit battles.
Boehner late Monday afternoon lambasted Obama for claiming earlier in the day that congressional Republicans led by Boehner are doing nothing to help the economy.
Obama made the remarks, meant to commemorate the fifth anniversary of the Wall Street financial meltdown, as emergency vehicles and police swarmed the Navy Yard in response to a shooting that left a dozen people and the gunman dead.
“It’s a shame that the president could not manage to rise above partisanship today," Boehner said in a statement. "Instead, he should be working in a bipartisan way to address America’s spending problem, the way presidents of both parties have done before."
The president charged that the GOP is willing to "tank the economy" to please a Tea Party faction that wants to cut funding for Obamacare in a temporary budget bill that, if it fails, would force the federal government to shut down Oct. 1.
“Are some of these folks really so beholden to one extreme wing of their party that they’re willing to tank the entire economy just because they can’t get their way on this issue?” Obama said in an address at the White House. “Are they really willing to hurt people just to score political points? I hope not.”
The two parties are in the midst of a showdown over the temporary spending bill and separate legislation that would increase the nation's borrowing limit before the government defaults on its obligations in mid-October.
Other Democrats chimed in on the 5-year anniversary, though not in the same partisan terms as Obama.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., trumpeted the Democratic efforts to steer the nation's economy back on course by first passing the $700 billion bailout of Wall Street, followed by a major financial market reform law.
“Democrats led the response to the crisis and, working with President Obama, took necessary steps to bring our economy back from the brink," Pelosi said in a statement. "Today, we can see the results: Taxpayers have seen their investments in rescued banks repaid and workers have seen 42 straight months of private-sector job growth."