(CNN) A political summit Friday at the White House left it to the Senate’s top Democrat and Republican to work out a compromise to avoid the country going over the fiscal cliff, participants said.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, told reporters that the next 24 hours would be “very important” toward efforts to reach a deal to lessen the harshest impacts of the fiscal cliff, a combination of broad tax hikes and deep spending cuts due to take effect at the start of the new year.

“Whatever we come up with is going to be imperfect. Some people aren’t going to like it, some people are going to like it less,” Reid said on the Senate floor after the high-stakes meeting with President Barack Obama, other congressional leaders and top administration officials.

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