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Protesters urge government spending cuts on Capitol Hill

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Protesters demonstrate in front of the Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, on April 6, urging for government spending cut. Republican US House Speaker John Boehner told US President Barack Obama he was "hopeful" that talks on sweeping spending cuts would reach a deal to avert a partial government shutdown at week's end. Boehner reiterated that the House's goal is to prevent a government shutdown and make real cuts in spending, which the Speaker has argued is necessary to support private-sector job creation and boost confidence in the nation's economy." US lawmakers and the White House are racing to make a midnight Friday deadline to have an agreement on legislation funding government operations through October 1, failing which key federal agencies will shut down.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio, right, accompanied by Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., talks to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, April 6, after meeting to work on a budget deal and avoid a government shutdown.

Evan Vucci / AP

Visitors gather in the main entrance of the National Air and Space Museum on the National Mall in Washington, Wednesday, April 6. The White House warns of a temporary cutoff in pay for troops in war zones if the budget impasse brings a partial government shutdown. The IRS wouldn't be able to process some tax refunds, and there also could be a holdup in mortgage applications and small business loans. National parks and museums would be closed, too.

 NBC's Nomenico Montanaro says:

"The president isn't leading," House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) charged, noting first that he liked the president personally and that they "get along well."

He criticized the president for not implementing any of his own fiscal commission's recommendations in his budget.

And he upped the ante, saying House Republicans were prepared to go forward with a bold one-week continuing resolution that would cut a whopping $12 billion in spending but continue to fund the Pentagon through September.

Read the rest of Montanaro's story in First Read.