Vice President Biden and congressional leaders will begin hammering out a deal on spending cuts Thursday.
The Capitol Hill meeting between Biden and Democrats and Republicans from the House and Senate is set for 4 p.m. It's the first meeting since President Obama on Wednesday called for talks on a long-term measure to fund government operations the rest of the year.
Both Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerFeehery: The next Republican wave is coming Rift widens between business groups and House GOP Juan Williams: Pelosi shows her power MORE (R-Ohio) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellDole in final column: 'Too many of us have sacrificed too much' Schumer steps on the gas to move Biden agenda Hoyer says Dec. 15 is drop-dead deadline to hike debt ceiling MORE (R-Ky.) will participate in the meetings, their offices confirmed, after there had been some lingering doubt about whether the two top Republicans would accept the invitation to the talks.
BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerFeehery: The next Republican wave is coming Rift widens between business groups and House GOP Juan Williams: Pelosi shows her power MORE-bidens-time-would-be-better-spent-with-democrats" href="http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/147203-boehner-bidens-time-would-be-better-spent-with-democrats">Boehner said Wednesday night that Biden's time would be better spent helping form a Democratic position on spending cuts with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidBottom line Voters need to feel the benefit, not just hear the message Schumer-McConnell dial down the debt ceiling drama MORE (D-Nev.).
"I think the vice president would better spend his time if he sat down with Harry Reid [and] Nancy Pelosi and come up with a Democrat position," Boehner told Fox News. "It'd be a far better use of his time."
The White House said that Chief of Staff William Daley and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Director Jack LewJacob (Jack) Joseph LewThe Hill's Morning Report - Biden argues for legislative patience, urgent action amid crisis On The Money: Senate confirms Yellen as first female Treasury secretary | Biden says he's open to tighter income limits for stimulus checks | Administration will look to expedite getting Tubman on bill Sorry Mr. Jackson, Tubman on the is real MORE will also participate in the meeting.
It comes a day after Obama signed a measure to keep the government operating for the next two weeks. That measure included $4 billion in spending cuts. The measure was easily passed in both the House and Senate, but Democrats agreed to the cuts reluctantly, and Pelosi voted against them.