ED HENRY: You mentioned at the top about the shooting and the president offered his thoughts and prayers and he pushed back his statement to allow the D.C. mayor and the police chief to talk about what they said was an active manhunt. There may be other shooters, they weren't sure. They didn't have all the facts, etc.
Why then did the president go ahead with what became a series of attacks on Republicans about the health care law, about, you know, the debt-ceiling fight, etc? Tonally, did it not seem a little bit off in the middle of this manhunt, people being informed about lives lost to move forward with an attack on the other side?
JAY CARNEY: Well, Ed, I think he addressed at the top of his speech about the five-year anniversary [of the 2008 financial crisis] and the need to make sure that we as a nation do not make mistakes, we as Washington do not make mistakes and, you know, reverse the progress that we have achieved. And I think that's an important thing for the president to talk about. It's an important thing for Congress to talk about and act on. And it's entirely appropriate, today, for the president to talk about that.
We face, as the president noted, some looming deadlines. Congress needs to act. It has some very clear top-line responsibilities. Fund the government, pass bills that pay for the activities of the United States government. They insisted on a process whereby budgets were passed in the Senate and the House and now Republicans have blocked the process of reconciliation. They insisted on a process where the president would put forward his proposals that included compromise on things like entitlements. The president has done that. We've yet to see a counter-offer many, many, many months later.
So, time is short. We need to address these challenges. It is also true that we have an unfolding situation here in Washington with regards to the violent action and shootings and it's entirely appropriate for the president to address that at the top of his remarks.