We have earned that responsibility over more than two centuries because of the dynamism of our economy and our entrepreneurs, the productivity of our workers, but also because we keep our word and we meet our obligations. That's what full faith and credit means. You can count on us.
And today I want our people and our businesses and the rest of the world to know that the full faith and credit of the United States remains unquestioned.
But to all my friends in Congress, understand that how business is done in this town has to change because we've all got a lot of work to do on behalf of the American people, and that includes the hard work of regaining their trust.
Our system of self-government doesn't function without it. And now that the government has reopened and this threat to our economy is removed, all of us need to stop focusing on the lobbyists, and the bloggers, and the talking heads on radio and the professional activists who profit from conflict, and focus on what the majority of Americans sent us here to do, and that's grow this economy, create good jobs, strengthen the middle class, educate our kids, lay the foundation for broad-based prosperity and get our fiscal house in order for the long haul. That's why we're here. That should be our focus.
Now, that won't be easy. We all know that we have divided government right now. There's a lot of noise out there, and the pressure from the extremes affect how lot of members of Congress see the day-to-day work that's supposed to be done here.
And let's face it. The American people don't see every issue the same way. That doesn't mean we can't make progress. And when we disagree, we don't have to suggest that the other side doesn't love this country or believe in free enterprise or all the other rhetoric that seems to get worse every single year. If we disagree on something, we can move on and focus on the things we agree on and get some stuff done.
Let me be specific about three places where I believe we can make progress right now.
First, in the coming days and weeks, we should sit down and pursue a balanced approach to a responsible budget, a budget that grows our economy faster and shrinks our long-term deficits further. At the beginning of this year, that's what both Democrats and Republicans committed to doing. Senate passed a budget. House passed a budget. They were supposed to come together and negotiate. And had one side not decided to pursue a strategy of brinksmanship, each side could have gotten together and figured out how do we shape a budget that provides certainty to businesses and people who rely on government, provides certainty to investors and our economy, and we'd be growing faster right now.