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It doesn't have a name, but it probably should: the axiom that when budgets and taxes and debt increasingly dominate politics in Washington, utterances of the words "Reagan" and "Thatcher" climb exponentially.

As detailed at length here, high-profile GOP presidential hopefuls constantly extol the former British Prime Minister. That's true whether it's to bash President Obama, or burnish their own conservative bona fides, or both.

And, of course, Ronald Reagan's decades-long reign as the Patron Saint of conservatism never really lets up, no matter what the issue du jour in DC.

But two days after Congressional Republicans took a pass on a $4 trillion fiscal reform grand bargain because Democrats insisted that a minority of the deficit reduction come from new tax revenue, it's worth reviewing the Thatcher and Reagan records on spending, taxes, and debt -- and recalling that the transatlantic Tory twins didn't mind spending money, and weren't nearly as averse to tax increases as are their idolators in the U.S. Congress today.

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President Obama said both sides have to be willing to sustain some political pain in order to reach a deal on cutting the nation's long-term debt, and he urged his own party to accept changes to entitlement programs in order to wrangle some targeted tax increases out of Republicans.

Recognizing that he has a lot of work still ahead of him to convince Democrats to agree to altering Medicare or Social Security, Obama tried to lay some ground work Monday at a press briefing.

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Updated at 8:16 p.m.

A Sunday evening White House summit on debt negotiations has concluded with no signs of progress after a weekend full of fits and starts in the talks between President Obama, Congressional Democrats and Republicans.

Throughout the past few days, Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) has sent mixed signals that the debt-ceiling needs to be raised while backtracking from attempts to reach a grand bargain to reduce the nation's long-term debt.

After the Sunday evening meeting, Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer announced via Twitter that talks would continue Monday and Obama would hold a press conference at 11 a.m. but did not immediately characterize the state of play. Statements from Congressional leaders indicated that Democrats and Republicans were still locking horns on the key issues of tax increases and changes to entitlement programs.

A spokesman for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) blamed Congressional Democrats' refusal to greenlight any changes to Medicare and Social Security for the ongoing stalemate.

"The members will meet again tomorrow, though it's disappointing that the President is unable to bring his own party around to the entitlement reform that he put on the table," McConnell spokesman Don Stewart said in an e-mailed statement. "And it's baffling that the President and his party continue to insist on massive tax hikes in the middle of a jobs crisis while refusing to take significant action on spending reductions at a time of record deficits."

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) issued a statement after the talks, saying Demorats are still squarely opposed to Medicare block grants to the states.

She said she came into the weekend hoping to achieve a grand bargain and "is still hopeful for a large bipartisan agreement, which means more stability for our economy, more growth and jobs, and more deficit reduction over a longer period of time."

"This package must do no harm to the middle class or to economic growth," Pelosi stressed. "It must also protect Medicare and Social Security beneficiaries, and we continue to have serious concerns about shifting billions in Medicaid costs to the states."

While a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) said his boss remains "firmly committed to getting the most robust deal possible," and during the meeting, stressed the need for an approach that is "balanced between spending and revenues, in terms of timing, specificity and dollars."

"Senator Reid believes the stakes are too high for Republicans to keep taking the easy way out, and he is committed to meeting every day until we forge a deal, however long that takes," said the spokesman.

The meeting began at 6:10 in the White House Cabinet Room with President Obama seated at the center of the table, flanked by Reid and Boehner. The dress code was appropriately casual for a sultry Sunday evening in July. No one wore ties, opting for open-collar shirts and blazers instead.

A White House pool reporter shouted, "Mr. President, can you get a deal done in 10 days?"

Obama responded: "We need to."

Follow this reporter on Twitter: @susancrabtree

Jumping off Tim Pawlenty's professed admiration for Lady Gaga's gay anthem "Born This Way," NBC's David Gregory asked the presidential candidate if he thought gays were, in fact, born into their orientation. According to Pawlenty, the answer is above his pay grade.

[TPM SLIDESHOW: Meet the 2012 GOPers: Tim Pawlenty]

Pawlenty told Gregory on Meet The Press that when it came to whether homosexuality was a choice or an innate part of a person's character, "the science in that regard is in dispute" and that it was unclear whether it was "behavioral or partly genetic."

"There's no scientific conclusion that it's genetic," he said. "We don't know that. So we don't know to what extent, you know, it's behavioral and-- that's something that's been debated by scientists for a long time. But as I understand the science, there's no current conclusion that it's genetic."

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House Speaker John Boehner is abandoning discussions with the White House on a large-scale debt deal slated to achieve $4 trillion in deficit reduction. The bone of contention is Boehner's insistence on no tax increases in the deal. Instead, Boehner said the talks should focus on reaching a smaller debt-reduction deal.

"Despite good-faith efforts to find common ground, the White House will not pursue a bigger debt reduction agreement without tax hikes," Boehner said in the statement.

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It didn't take long for TPM readers to identify the two likeminded conservatives with whom Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) shared two pricey $350 bottles of Pinot Noir Wednesday night.

The two names repeatedly flooded into TPM's e-mail since our story on Ryan's big spending night first ran Friday, and we spent the next 24 hours trying to reach the pair to confirm their identities and get their side of the story.

[TPM SLIDESHOW: Hey Big Spenders: What Else Could Wealthy Candidates Buy With All That Campaign Cash?]

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Tim Pawlenty and his top staff are increasingly downplaying the importance of Iowa in interviews, a strange turn given its central importance to his campaign so far.

Pawlenty told reporters that "this week is the first time that I've campaigned in earnest in Iowa," according to the Des Moines Register despite the fact that he's been pouring huge amounts of time and resources into the state for months.

[TPM SLIDESHOW: Meet the 2012 GOPers: Tim Pawlenty]

Earlier this week, top aide Vin Weber lowered expectations for the campaign by labeling Pawlenty's rival Minnesotan Michele Bachmann the frontrunner, who has been surging in the polls.

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