Obama says it appears some progress in Senate toward averting default

Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama said on Monday it appears there has been progress in Senate fiscal impasse negotiations but that there is a good chance the United States will default on its debts if Republicans are unwilling to set aside some partisan concerns.

Obama emerged from the White House to visit Martha's Table, a charity organization for low-income families where some furloughed government workers have been volunteering.

Obama, who is to meet congressional leaders at the White House at 3 p.m. EDT (1900 GMT), said he would be able to determine at that meeting whether the progress is real toward ending a government shutdown and avoiding a debt default ahead of a Thursday deadline.

"My hope is that a spirit of cooperation will move us forward in the next few hours," Obama said.

(Reporting by Roberta Rapmpton; Writing by Steve Holland; Editing by Bill Trott)

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