President Obama, declaring that “greater progress is within sight,” Tuesday summoned the bipartisan leadership of Congress to the White House on Thursday to hammer out a debt agreement he said was critical to the nation. He urged both sides to come to those talks without the political gamesmanship that has marked so much of the discussions.
“It is my hope that everybody is going to leave their political ultimatums at the door,” he said, “and that we’ll all leave our political rhetoric at the door and that we’re going to do what’s best for our economy and what’s best for our people.”
His comments came in a short appearance in the White House briefing room. He cast the bipartisan talks at the White House – which were reported earlier Tuesday by National Journal Daily – as the best chance to break the long budget impasse.
He said he called for the meeting on Thursday “so we can build on the work that’s already been done and drive toward a final agreement.” This, he said, “will require both parties to get out of our comfort zones and both parties to agree on real compromise. I’m ready to do that. I believe there are enough people in each party that are willing to do that.”