Obama: Congress holding back recovery

President Obama on Friday said Congress was preventing the American economy from taking off, blaming the "constant cycle of manufactured crises and self-inflicted wounds" for stalling a full recovery.

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"It's like the gears of our economy, every time they are just about to take off, suddenly somebody taps the breaks and says, not so fast," Obama said at an economic event at the Port of New Orleans.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday that the economy added more than 200,000 jobs — beating expectations — but that the unemployment rate also rose to 7.3 percent, partially due to furloughed federal workers who were off the job for more than two weeks.

The report also showed that the number of Americans searching for jobs hit a 35-year low.

Obama said there was "no question that the shutdown harmed our jobs market."

"The unemployment rate still ticked up and we don't yet know all the data for this this final quarter of the year, but it could be down because off what happened in Washington," Obama said, adding that it made "no sense" to restrict growth with political posturing.

"These self-inflicted wounds don't have to happen. They should not happen again. We should not be injuring ourselves every few months."

Republicans have blamed the president's economic policies for the unemployment increase 

“While more Americans found jobs this month, I continue to worry about the millions of Americans who can’t find a job despite looking for one month after month after month,” said Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus.

“Americans deserve better. In Washington and in state capitals across the country, Republicans will continue to fight for free market solutions that create jobs and give hope, while opposing the big government programs that crush economic opportunity.”

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