(NBCNC) - Congressional leaders from both parties head to the White House Friday for round one of negotiations on the fiscal cliff.
They have until the end of the year to agree on huge spending cuts, or automatic cuts kick in and every American will see an overnight tax increase.
The key sticking point is tax cuts for the wealthy.
President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner are each drawing a line in the sand over letting the Bush-era tax cuts expire for Americans making more than a quarter million dollars a year.
Speaker Boehner wants a tax overhaul that raises money by cutting loopholes.
Republicans say they want the president to address the real problem, which they define as massive entitlement spending.
Democrats say Republicans are going to have to compromise, just like the president and his party did after getting walloped in the 2010 elections.
The president and the speaker are both hoping for a big deal, but with time running out, some members of both parties are willing to go over the cliff and let the new Congress fight it out.