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(NECN/NBC News: Brian Mooar) - There were hopes Saturday that House Republicans and Senate Democrats would find a way to get the government open again.
That didn't happen, and neither did an attempted to avert a national default in less than a week.
Still, some lawmakers from both sides see reason to be optimistic.
Republicans in the House were at work for a third Saturday in a row, but dashed mounting hopes of a breakthrough in Washington's shutdown showdown.
"The president is freezing out America. And we'll do everything we can to make the point that we went to negotiate, and he took no offers," said Republican Rep. Darrell Issa.
Republicans retreated from their demands to roll back Obamacare, but they say the president won't bend on spending.
"No deal, as far as we're concerned," said Republican Rep. Paul Ryan.
They're walking away, putting pressure on the Senate to make a deal before the nation hits its debt limit on Thursday.
Democrats tried and failed to push a clean debt limit extension until December of next year, a plan they knew Republicans would nix.
"Today brings bad news, and good news," said Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer.
But the chamber's Democratic and Republican leaders did something they've been unable to do throughout this crisis - talk.
"This should be seen as something very positive," said Democratic Sen. Harry Reid. "Even though we don't have anything done yet, and a long ways to go before anything like that will happen."
Painfully aware they don't have much time left, Democrats met with President Obama Saturday afternoon at the White House to talk strategy and look for a way out.
Senate Democrats rejected a compromise by moderate Republican Susan Collins of Maine - a plan that looked like the brightest prospect yet of a deal.