President Barack Obama warned that he will not negotiate over budget issues with Republicans in a bid to end the partial US government 'shutdown'.
Talks at the White House did not lead to a breakthrough but Obama remained hopeful that "common sense will prevail" in the standoff.
A statement from the White House said: "The president made clear to the leaders that he is not going to negotiate over the need for Congress to act to reopen the government or to raise the debt limit to pay the bills Congress has already incurred."
Obama held talks will senior US politicians, including the top Republican, House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner, over the government 'shutdown' which began on Tuesday.
The US shutdown is but a precursor to a much bigger problem - in a couple of weeks the government, shutdown or not, will run out of cash.
Landmarks across the US have closed as the Congress failed to reach a deal over the budget.