Giving up on stopping the $85 billion in sequestration spending cuts set to take effect on Friday, House lawmakers headed home for the weekend Thursday with Republicans blaming Democrats and Democrats blaming Republicans.
The sweeping cuts will take an immediate toll on on defense and social services.
Some Republicans are okay with that.
"We're not going to walk away from the only chance of getting spending under control around here," said Wisconsin Representative Paul Ryan.
They're also blaming the president.
"After thwarting every bipartisan attempt to avert the sequester, the president is ready to make it bite as hard as possible," argued Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.
Mr. Obama is warning the cuts will hurt.
The president has sent out his secretaries of Homeland Security, Education and Transportation
to say the effects will be felt by April, and that message has taken off.
Will the sequester force a budget deal with the tax hikes on the rich President Obama demands?
House Speaker John Boehner called that "stealing".
"How much more money do we want to steal from the American people to fund more government? I'm for no more," he vowed.
Just before the cuts take effect President Obama will meet with Congressional leaders at the White House, but no one expects any last minute deal.
-- Steve Handelsman reports