WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama told top lawmakers on Wednesday he was ready to work with Republicans and Democrats on a "balanced" approach to deficit-cutting but would not permit another down-to-the-wire debt ceiling crisis, the White House said.

White House spokesman Jay Carney said Obama made clear in the sandwich lunch he hosted that congressional leaders needed to "avoid refighting old political fights" and made clear he will not allow "a replay of last summer's self-inflicted political crisis."

"The president made clear ... that we are not going to recreate the debt ceiling debacle of last August," Carney said, saying any agreement on deficit reduction needed to include some new revenues as well as spending and program cuts. Republicans have resisted tax increases as part of a budget deal.

(Reporting By Laura MacInnis and Matt Spetalnick; Editing by Vicki Allen)