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Posted at 3:00 PM ET, 02/ 8/2011

Obama to lunch Wednesday with congressional GOP leaders

By Felicia Sonmez

Updated: 3 p.m.

President Obama will host top congressional Republicans at the White House for lunch Wednesday, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs announced Tuesday.

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) and Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) are scheduled to attend the lunch with Obama at 12:30 p.m.

"I think the president will have a chance to talk through with them many of the things that he outlined in the State of the Union," Gibbs said, adding that the quartet will likely focus on "all issues, foreign and domestic," with "a heavy discussion on the economy and on spending."

One item not likely to be on the agenda -- at least in detail -- is the federal budget. Gibbs said that the White House "will save that" for Feb. 14, the day the budget is set to be officially released.

Cantor told reporters Tuesday at his weekly pen-and-pad briefing that he was looking forward to the meeting.

"I'm very appreciative of the invite and look forward to the discussion," Cantor said. "Hopefully this speaks to his willingness to focus on the issues that the American people are telling us to focus on, which is jobs and the economy."

Cantor added that he'd like to speak with Obama about his remarks on Monday to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, during which the president urged businesses to hire and invest in order to boost the economy.

"I think that what I heard is a sense that somehow business in America needs to respond and act in a way that is somehow grateful for Washington's acts," Cantor said of Obama's remarks to the Chamber. "And this sort of quid-pro-quo, that if Washington acts to -- whatever it is the president's proposing, whether it's reducing the corporate rates, or whether it's passing trade bills -- that somehow business owes it to the country to do X, Y, Z, I think that misses the mark."

The meeting follows one late last week between Obama and the top Senate Republican, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).

By Felicia Sonmez  | February 8, 2011; 3:00 PM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency  
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Cantor added that he'd like to speak with Obama about his remarks on Monday to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, during which the president urged businesses to hire and invest in order to boost the economy.
Cantor appears to disagree with the President's remark.

Perhaps there is a way to improve the economy without hiring and investing!

I'd like to nominate Cantor for the Nobel Prize in Economy.

Posted by: kishorgala | February 9, 2011 12:37 PM | Report abuse

I hope there is not a food fight.

Posted by: kishorgala | February 9, 2011 12:31 PM | Report abuse

My comment is really a question for Puck-101. Do you feel better since you disrespectfully mentioned some of the black stereotypes-the watermellon, cotton, etc.? And calling Mrs. Obama a First Moose? You no doubt thought that you were being clever, but it really isn't even funny. Hopefully, in the future, you will respect yourself more and afford others the same consideration. Hate only begets hate.

Posted by: questioner2 | February 9, 2011 11:01 AM | Report abuse

" Obama to Lunch today with GOP Leaders " Today is the day for all Americans to pray for one huge case of ptomaine to hit the kitchen that prepares that Feast. I hope the First Moose is preparing the Menu. I know what the dessert will be. But you can't survive long by just eating Watermelon. After the Grits and Fried chicken, they can all go out to the Rose Garden and pick some cotton to work off all the Grease and Fat . Just be careful you don't saddle the First Moose lads , thats' her over on the side in one of those ugly gowns she wears. And no, the one with the bandage on his index finger, and the ugly ears is what's masquerading as a President. Anyway, a Republican should be able to recognize a Donkey. He's the one that resembles the Jackazzes you've all become.

Posted by: puck-101 | February 9, 2011 5:35 AM | Report abuse

another photo-op for obamao

Posted by: g55rumpy | February 9, 2011 1:50 AM | Report abuse

The president will be criticized for meeting with them - he'd be criticized if he didn't meet with them.
Kudos for trying to work with the opposition. Remind me when Bush ever tried something like this.

Posted by: muleman | February 8, 2011 8:55 PM | Report abuse

Eric Cantor's remark about how business doesn't need to respond in kind to White House initiatives to help business has some truth in it, albeit the cynical bits of truth. When, after all, has big business done anything but do what it wants unless really compelled to do otherwise? Why should it? Business is all about self-interest. And no use whining--it is what it is. We then get to hope that capitalist theory is correct, namely, that the net outcome of all that energetic self-interest is a greater good.

Gee, I wish I weren't a skeptic (sorry, but the massive redistribution of wealth UPWARDS thanks to the Reagan and Bush43 administrations had something to do with it . . .). What was wrong with the wealth distribution under that commie Eisenhower????

Posted by: post_reader_in_wv | February 8, 2011 7:46 PM | Report abuse

Is it the Ides of March already?

Obama, remember what happened the last time you tried negotiating with these thugs? They got the teeth out of the Affordable Health Care for America Act then not one of the traitors voted for it.

Them after they lied their way into a majority in the House they tried to turn control of the health care system back over to the insurance companies, the people how make larger profits by denying health care.

So, I don't want to be an alarmist, but the right-wing crime syndicate and hate group calling themselves republicans aren't exactly anyone to be trusted.

And whatever you do, don't let them drive the bus again. We still haven't put it back together after their last stint behind the wheel.

Posted by: PoliticalPrisoner2012 | February 8, 2011 7:41 PM | Report abuse

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