A White House Twitter town hall may have the advantage of limiting comments to succinct 40 word questions, and add another first for the 44th President. After tweeting with the American people, the President’s Weekly, turns to the Congress to get the job done.

Ideology seems to keep everyone in lock step. Republicans will not raise or add any taxes under any circumstances coupled with some political gamesmanship for the 2012 elections; some Democrats will not make any concessions on benefits, even though many years ago, a prominent, well-admired Democrat said:

We must frankly acknowledge our complicity in the creation of the unconscionable budget deficit and recognize that to seriously address it will put entitlements at risk. The idea of justice between generations mandates such acknowledgment and more. The baby boomers and their progeny have a right to a secure future. We must be willing to sacrifice for growth – provided there is equity in sacrifice. Equity means all will sacrifice – equally. That includes the retiree living on a fixed income, the day laborer, the corporate executive, the college professor, the Member of Congress…all means all.

Barbara Jordan, 1992 DNC Convention

At today’s press conference, President Obama said,

I do not see a path to a deal if they don’t budge, period. I mean, if the basic proposition is “it’s my way or the highway,” then we’re probably not going to get something done because we’ve got divided government. We’ve got Democrats controlling the Senate; we probably are going to need Democratic votes in the House for any package that could possibly pass. And so if, in fact, Mitch McConnell and John Boehner are sincere — and I believe they are — that they don’t want to see the U.S. government default, then they’re going to have to compromise just like Democrats are going to have to compromise; just like I have shown myself willing to compromise.

“Sacrifice” and “compromise” — at this rate, can “austerity” be far behind?