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(NECN/NBC News: Danielle Leigh) - President Obama and Congressional leaders are promising to compromise after their first face-to-face meeting regarding the fiscal cliff since the election.
At last, both sides seem ready to compromise on a budget -- but the time to do that is almost up, and that means growing pressure from voters to get things done.
President Obama and leaders of Congress sat across the table for the first time since the election to take on America's growing debt.
"My hope is, is that this is going to be the beginning of a fruitful process,” Obama said.
Without a deficit-cutting deal, Americans will get a one-two punch to their bank accounts in the form of higher taxes and across-the-board spending cuts in just about six weeks.
“To show our seriousness, we've put revenue on the table as long as it's accompanied by significant spending cuts,” said House Speaker John Boehner.
Republicans who have been adamantly against tax hikes are willing to talk about increasing revenue, and Democrats who have opposed cuts to programs like Social Security are recognizing they'll have to give a little, too.
"We're both going to have to give up some of things know are a problem,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.
Meanwhile, there are some new voices outside the capitol: A campaign led by young people is pressuring lawmakers to answer the very question on just about every American's mind: Do you have a plan to reduce this country's debt?
Ryan Schoenike is the founder of the campaign "The Can Kicks Back."
"Congress continually kicks the can down the road,” Schoenike said. “We've realized the can is our generation, so starting now, we're kicking back."
Lawmakers seem to be listening with just one meeting down. They say a deal may be in sight -- a deal that won’t just kick the problem down the road.