We begin with the summit between two fierce rivals. President obama, opening the white house doors today to the man who had once hoped to move in there as president himself. Take a look. There they... See More
We begin with the summit between two fierce rivals. President obama, opening the white house doors today to the man who had once hoped to move in there as president himself. Take a look. There they were, standing in the oval office, the president and governor mitt romney. They would spend more than an hour at a private lunch and everyone was wondering if somehow, they would agree to work together on america's fiscal crisis. Our jonathan karl has been on the phone today to find out what happened. Reporter: It wasn't the way mitt romney wanted to arrive at the white house. Over the gaze of the oval office portrait of abraham lincoln, known for his team of rivals, romney and obama met alone for an hour. By all accounts, much more cordial than their last encounter. No, I had a question, and the question was -- you want me to answer a question. Reporter: On the menu, whit turkey chili and southwestern grilled chicken salad. And some fence mending. Down the street on capitol hill was where the real fireworks were. Partisan sniping and real talks in preventing a big tax hike for everybody are going backwards, fast. Just listen to the m theic senate leader talking about the speaker of the house today. I don't understand his brain, so, you should ask him. Reporter: President obama and speaker boehner spoke by phone last night in the call sources tell abc news was blunt and unproductive. Both men refusing to give ground on the issue of tax rates for the wealthy. Obama insisting they go up, boehner insisting they don't. Listen, this is not a game. Jobs are on the line. This is a moment for adult leadership. Reporter: And taxes aren't the only sticking point. Republicans are demands that the president come forward with a plan to limit spending on med scare and social security. I didn't have my own card. Jill wouldn't let me have one. Reporter: Vice president biden got into the act today, too, taking a break from christmas shopping and snacking at cost coto urge kons to extend middle class tax cuts. I think it's important congress acts now. I mean, right now. Reporter: Can mitt romney, with all his business experience play a role of brokering a deal? Well, don't count on it, diane. The president did not ask for his help today and the two similarly agreed to keep in touch. And for now, nothing more. Reporter: All right, thank you, jonathan karl.
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.