It has been 11 days since President Barack Obama has met with Congressional leaders on the fiscal cliff and with impending doom just 35 days away, key lawmakers say the President isn't working hard enough to broker a deal.
White House Press Secretary Jay Carney was on the defense Tuesday. He pointed out that the president spoke on the phone with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and with House Speaker John Boehner over the weekend.
Carney says the President has to talk directly to the American people.
"It is vitally important that ordinary Americans actively engage in this debate because the outcome these negotiations and hopeful conduct of these negotiation – or the product we hope emerges from these negotiations - will profoundly affect their lives," says Carney.
Is the President the missing ingredient in really nailing down a fiscal cliff compromise?
OutFront tonight: Democratic Senator Mark Warner of Virginia sits on the Senate Budget Committee and a member of the Senate's bipartisan "Gang of Eight," working to develop a deficit reduction plan.