President Barack Obama blamed House Republicans for forcing the government shutdown early Tuesday, saying the partial closure of government could have been avoided and will harm the economy.
Obama repeatedly called it a "Republican shutdown."
"One faction of one party in one House of Congress in one branch of government shut down major parts of the government, all because they didn't like one law,'' he said. "This Republican shutdown did not have to happen, but I want every American to understand why it did happen. Republicans in the House of Representative refused to fund the government unless we defunded or dismantled the Affordable Care Act."
Obama spoke from the Rose Garden, where he appeared with Americans he says have been helped by the new health care law, parts of which began Tuesday.
But he acknowledged there have been glitches in the startup, saying that more than 1 million people visiting the online site this morning before 7 a.m. causing it to be sluggish.
"Like every new law, every new product roll out, there are going to be some glitches in the signup process along the way that we will fix. I've been saying this from the start," he said.