WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama and Republican and
Democratic congressional leaders are preparing for their first
joint meeting since midterm elections altered the government's
balance of power.

The president and the House and Senate leaders from both parties
planned to meet Tuesday at the White House to engage in talks about
the Bush-era tax rates and a U.S.-Russia treaty to reduce nuclear
weapons arsenals.
     

The meeting will also help define the interaction between the
White House and a divided Congress for the next two years.
     

 Republicans will take over control of the House in January and
will gain seats in the Senate, weakening the Democrats' grip.