July 31 - Barack Obama sought to rally Democrats behind an aggressive approach to the fall budget showdowns with Republicans, making a rare visit to Capitol Hill. Mana Rabiee reports.
STORY: President Barack Obama made a rare visit to Capitol Hill on Wednesday. He's rallying Democrats before budget showdowns with Republicans this fall, urging them to fight against budget cuts. (SOUNDBITE) (English) HOUSE MINORITY SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI SAYING: "We had a very enthusiastic meeting with the President of the United States." (SOUNDBITE) (English) HOUSE DEMOCRATIC WHIP STENY HOYER SAYING: "It was a very positive meeting. A meeting which I think was an important one for us to have with the president as we leave for this August break and go talk with the American people." In previous showdowns, Obama agreed with Republicans -- at least rhetorically -- on the need to rein in deficit spending. But Democrats say he's going to be more aggressive now about spending proposals. He's already refusing to negotiate with Republicans over the debt-limit increase. House Speaker John Boehner was asked if the President was shutting Republicans out. (SOUNDBITE) (English) HOUSE SPEAKER JOHN BOEHNER SAYING: "We're going to have ample time to deal with the fiscal issues that are staring us right in the face and I'm confident that when we get into the fall we find it may be a messy process but I suspect we'll find a way to get there." Democrats also say Obama may be more willing to let the government shutdown - if Republicans don't give in on spending limits. This time in the budget battles, they say, he's determined to get the upper hand.