WASHINGTON - House Speaker John Boehner says President Barack Obama is demanding the GOP surrender the budget and debt limit fight unconditionally, but Republicans won't do it.
The Ohio Republican was responding to Obama's statement earlier saying he would discuss anything Republicans want, including proposed changes to "Obamacare," but not under the threat of "economic chaos."
He urged Boehner to hold a vote immediately to reopen the government and to allow the country to borrow more money.
Boehner is insisting instead that the two sides start negotiating now on the terms of any budget or debt agreement, saying attaching other measures is a long-held practice.
They spoke with the government's partial shutdown in its eighth day. An even bigger financial crisis looms next week when the government reaches its borrowing limit.
The President's Asia trip was scrapped, most of his staff has been furloughed and he's refused to negotiate with House Republicans. So on Tuesday, President Barack Obama was looking for something to fill the time.
His destination? The White House briefing room, where reporters and photographers packed in for a hastily arranged news conference, eager for any sign of a breakthrough in Washington's latest round of gridlock. But there was little to say that hadn't been said already.
That didn't keep Obama from saying it all again during a news conference that stretched on for more than an hour. He promised that his opening statement would be brief - then proceeded to speak for nearly 15 minutes before taking questions.
(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)