bad for America that it is worth disrupting government funding to undercut it.
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.
The US also faces running out of money and defaulting on its debt if there is no agreement to raise government borrowing limits later this month.
Obama and his Treasury Department said failure to raise the nation's borrowing limit, expected to hit its USD 16.7 trillion cap in mid-October, could precipitate an economic nosedive.
A default could cause the nation's credit markets to freeze, the value of the dollar to plummet and US interest rates to skyrocket, according to a Treasury report.
With the government likely to exhaust its cash reserves by mid-October, the Treasury said being forced into non-payment of its debt would spark financial turmoil and possibly send the country back to recession similar to the one witnessed in 2008-2009.
"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," the Treasury report said.
The House yesterday sought to relieve some of the pain caused by the shutdown by pressing forward with a series of small spending bills to reopen the parts of government deemed most politically sensitive, voting to fund veterans' programmes and pay inactive National Guardsmen and reservists.
Those bills followed measures to restart clinical trials at the National Institutes of Health, reopen national parks, monuments and museums, and allow the District of Columbia to maintain city services.
The US government closed non-essential operations on Tuesday after Congress failed to strike a deal on spending and budget due to differences over the Obamacare law, the signature healthcare programme of President Obama. Republicans and Democrats are blaming each other for the impasse.
The shutdown has left nearly 800,000