In his weekly radio address on Saturday, President Barack Obama said the government shutdown needed to end so Congress could work on comprehensive immigration reform.

Obama rejected a House Republican proposal that would have re-opened the government and raised the debt-ceiling for six-weeks in return for an agreement on a “framework” on negotiations on more long-term budgetary issues. He said “this Republican shutdown” had to end “because there is so much else we should be focusing our energies on right now” and cited immigration as one of the things the government had to “fix.”

“We’ve got to create more jobs, and kids to educate, and an immigration system to fix,” Obama said.

Obama has recently said that comprehensive immigration reform was his “number-one priority.” On Monday, his administration allowed thousands of pro-amnesty protesters to use the National Mall, which was supposed to be closed due to the shutdown, for their rally. The Obama administration has barricaded other open-air spaces like the World War II Memorial.

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