Obama to hold more debt talks with Senate Democrats

Reuters News
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Posted: Jun 28, 2011 1:34 PM
Obama to hold more debt talks with Senate Democrats

ABOARD AIR FORCE ONE (Reuters) - President Barack Obama will hold another round of talks with Senate Democratic leaders on Wednesday on raising the U.S. debt ceiling, the White House said on Tuesday.

"We believe there is the opportunity here for a substantial compromise on a significant deficit reduction agreement that is done in a way that's balanced," White House press secretary Jay Carney told reporters traveling with the president.

He declined to say if other White House meetings with lawmakers were planned this week, including with Republicans.

The president met with Senate leaders of both parties on Monday to keep talks alive on raising the country's $14.3 trillion debt ceiling, after negotiations led by Vice President Joe Biden stalled. But neither side has hinted at compromise.

Republicans declared an impasse in the Biden-led talks over Democratic demands that tax revenue-raising measures be included in any deficit reducing deal, alongside deep cuts in spending. Republicans say tax hikes are off the table.

Obama must forge a budget deal that would pave the way for the country's borrowing limit to be raised by an August 2 deadline, or risk the country defaulting on its financial obligations with disastrous consequences for the economy.

(Reporting by Caren Bohan, writing by Alister Bull, editing by Vicki Allen)