On a drizzly day here, Bush greeted delegates to the summit as they arrived Saturday morning for meetings that were closed to reporters. "Dmitry, good morning!" a chipper president said to Russian counterpart Dmitry Medvedev. "Silvio!" he enthused to Italian President Silvio Berlusconi.
Walter Russell Mead, a senior fellow with the Council on Foreign Relations, said a global stimulus agreement would not surprise him because it involves "politicians giving money to people." But he cautioned against too-high expectations for this emergency summit.
"Part of the problem is no one is really sure what to do," Mead said. "A summit is one of the things that make world leaders look busy."
In the U.S. capital, hundreds of protesters rallied as world leaders met for an emergency economic summit.
Outside the summit, the largest protest came from the nearly 200 demonstrators supporting Tibetan independence. They were joined by a smaller group from the spiritual movement Falun Gong in protesting China, which is attending the financial meeting at the National Building Museum.
Protesters chanted "Shame on China" on the outskirts of the perimeter established by police.
About 10 protesters from the ANSWER coalition — a group that has drawn thousands of antiwar protesters to Washington in the past — marched and picketed outside the building.
Farther away, more than 100 protesters rallied at Murrow Park. About midday, they began marching in the streets, led by a band of horns and protesters on stilts. At a traffic circle, they placed banners on a statue with messages like "Bury Capitalism" and "People Over Profit."