The White House called the partial government shutdown that entered its fourth day Friday "completely avoidable" and complained the shutdown was interfering with the president's efforts to promote trade and U.S. influence in emerging world markets.
Democrats pointed to disagreements within the Republican Party, where reluctant congressional leaders were prodded into a showdown over government funding and Obama's health care law by rowdier conservatives, such as Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.
To get the government up and running again, "it will take some coming together on the Republican side," said the House's lead Democrat, Rep. Nancy Pelosi of California.
"It's very hard to negotiate with the Republicans when they can't negotiate with themselves," Pelosi said Friday.
Senate Chaplain Barry Black opened Friday's business with a plea for God to "give our lawmakers the vision and the willingness to see and to do your will."
"Remove from them that stubborn pride which imagines itself to be above and beyond criticism. Forgive them for the blunders they have committed, infusing them with the courage to admit and correct mistakes," Black said.
Obama criticized Boehner for not bringing up a vote to finance the full reopening of the government without conditions.
"This shutdown could be over today," Obama said Friday as he stopped for lunch with Vice President Joe Biden at a local sandwich shop near the White House. "We know there are votes for it in the House."
Boehner and other Republicans put the blame on Obama. They say he should recognize the flaws of "Obamacare" and negotiate solutions as part of a deal to end the shutdown that forced the furlough of some 800,000 workers, more than a third of federal civilian employees.
Boehner said Obama was being "irresponsible."
On Friday, the Republican-led House was keeping up a drive to finance certain agencies and programs on a piecemeal basis — a strategy rejected by Obama and the Democratic-led Senate.
"We are not picking winners and losers," said Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn. "I think what we are doing is exercising stewardship over the taxpayers' dollars. ...I'm ready to go to work today and get it done."
The House planned a vote to fund a popular program providing food aid to pregnant women and their children, as well as ongoing disaster relief.
Furloughed federal workers would get retroactive pay under a bill the House plans to vote on Saturday. Some top Democrats have supported that idea alongside Republicans.
Obama had been scheduled to leave Saturday for economic summits next week in Indonesia and Brunei. His decision to cancel those plans underscored how entrenched both sides were in a partisan showdown with no end in sight.
"The cancellation of this trip is another consequence of the House Republicans forcing a shutdown of the government," White House press secretary Jay Carney said in a statement. "This completely avoidable shutdown is setting back our ability to create jobs through promotion of U.S. exports and advance U.S. leadership and interests in the largest emerging region in the world."