4:51PM EST WASHINGTON -- President Obama and Speaker of the House John Boehner met Sunday at the White House to discuss "efforts to resolve the fiscal cliff," White House spokesman Joshua Earnest said.

Earnest would not divulge details of the discussion.

The fiscal cliff refers to an automatic end of the tax cuts enacted by George W. Bush and $1.2 trillion in automatic spending cuts over 10 years if a deal is not reached at the end of the year.

Earlier Sunday, a growing number of Republicans in Congress appear to be moving toward acceptance of Obama's demand that tax rates go up on the wealthy, falling in line with the views of a top senator who sees that as a path toward their goal of obtaining cuts in costly entitlement programs like government health insurance and pension payments for older Americans.

Tennessee Sen. Bob Corker said on Fox television Sunday that he speaks for a many Republicans who realize that Obama holds the stronger hand on increasing taxes on the wealthy in the ongoing debate about how to avoid sending the U.S. economy over the so-called "fiscal cliff," big tax increases and cuts in government spending that will kick in automatically at the start of the year. Many economists and the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office predict that failure to solve the political standoff would push the fragile American economy back into recession.

Contributing: The Associated Press

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