WASHINGTON (CNN) – In his weekly address President Obama criticized Republicans for holding the U.S. democracy and economy "hostage." The President had strong words for House Republicans, who he is calling on to pass a budget to stop the government shutdown.
"Take that vote. Stop this farce. End this shutdown now," Obama said.
Obama also highlighted letters from constituents describing how the government shutdown is affecting the day-to-day lives of American citizens.
A woman in rural Alabama wrote about her concern for working families now that the shutdown has forced the local Head Start agency to stop providing services.
"There are parents who work and who attend school," she wrote. "Where are they leaving their children? Is it a safe environment? Are [they] getting the food that they receive at their Head Start program?"
But Obama also acknowledged that House Speaker John Boehner faces a GOP conference divided on what kinds of demands should be attached to legislation ending the shutdown.
Obama claims "the far right of the Republican Party won't let Speaker John Boehner give that bill a yes-or-no vote."
The message out of the White House all week has been one of non-negotiation, with Obama determined that Republicans approve a spending bill with no language that limits the Affordable Care Act.
Obama argued that although he is willing to work with either party when it comes to the financial health of the country, he will not budge when it comes to Obamacare.
"The American people don't get to demand ransom in exchange for doing their job. Neither does Congress. They don't get to hold our democracy or our economy hostage over a settled law. They don't get to kick a child out of Head Start if I don't agree to take her parents' health insurance away. That's not how our democracy is supposed to work."