Washington (CNN) - President Obama is readying for what the news media are now calling the "Slurpee summit." Following a post-election sit-down with his Cabinet Thursday, President Obama said he called Republican leaders Rep. John Boehner and Sen. Mitch McConnell, and Democratic leaders Rep. Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Harry Reid to come to the White House November 18th - at the start of the congressional "lame duck" session - for talks.
The President said the discussions would be substantive, not "just a photo-op." White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said the get together will be a mix of getting down to business, as well as a social occasion. The group will discuss legislative items in a working session at the White House, but then have dinner in the Obama's private residence upstairs. It will be a congressional party of eight, including House Majority Leader Rep. Steny Hoyer and Senate Majority Leader Sen. Dick Durbin, Republican House Whip Rep. Eric Cantor and Senate Republican Whip Sen. Jon Kyl. Gibbs said the bipartisan summit would be "the first of many" efforts to get the White House and Republicans on the same page.
One of the issues that "will take up a big chunk" of the bipartisan session, Gibbs said, is taking action to extend the Bush tax cuts, set to expire by the end of the year. Some Republicans are lobbying the White House for a two year extension of the tax cuts for everyone, not just for families making less than $250,000 a year as Mr. Obama favors. Gibbs said the President "would be open to that discussion."
Gibbs also said the President would be open to serving Slurpees for dessert.