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UPDATE: President Obama to Meet with Labor Leaders Friday

President Obama walks back to the White House after meeting with CEOs at Blair House Wednesday. (Fox News Photo)

President Obama will welcome union leaders to the White House Friday in an effort to have a substantive conversation on the economy.

The meeting comes as Obama earlier this week also met with the CEOs of major companies, partly to mend his sometimes strained relationship with the business community, but also to talk job creation.

Obama has had a strong-backing from the major unions in the country, however they were not happy when President Obama extended a federal pay freeze. "The president talked about the need for shared sacrifice, but there's nothing shared about Wall Street and CEOs making record profits and bonuses while working people bear the brunt. It is time to get our nation back on track, but we should not do so by placing an even greater burden on the middle class.," AFLCIO President Richard Trumka said last month when the pay freeze was announced.

Trumka is expected to attend the labor meeting at the White House Friday with President Obama and Labor Secretary Hilda Solis. Twelve union groups are expected to send representatives to the White House including United Steelworkers, American Federation of Teachers and United Auto Workers.

The White House says the conversation will be similar to the one held with CEOs Wednesday.

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs noted the meeting is part of an ongoing effort to bring varied points of views.

"[W]e're heading into an important year in our economy. And the President wants to hear from a series of different perspectives on what their ideas are," Gibbs said at Tuesday's briefing.

In addition to the CEOs, Obama also had economists at the White House this week. "And I think it all gives the President and the economic team here a full understanding and a candid discussion of the ideas that are available and where they see the economy heading," Gibbs added.

Historically labor leaders are an important political base particularly for Democratic presidents.

Obama has faced an increasing wedge with his base over the tax rate deal, which many Democrats charged that Obama had caved too much to Republicans.

So far the unions have not weighed in on the tax compromise -- at least publicly, which as of Thursday night was still being worked out on Capitol Hill.

Expected attendees for White House Meeting:AFL-CIO President Rich TrumkaUnited Food and Commercial Workers President Joe Hansen (Chair, Change to Win)National Education Association President Dennis Van RoekelUnited Steelworkers President Leo GerardAmerican Federation of Teachers President Randi WeingartenAmerican Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees President Gerald McEnteeService Employees International Union President Mary Kay HenryUnited Auto Workers President Bob KingInternational Association of Fire Fighters President Harold SchaitbergerInternational Brotherhood of Electrical Workers President Ed HillNational Association of Letter Carriers President Fred RolandoInternational Union of Painters and Allied Trades President Jimmy Williams

Fox News' Mike Emanuel & Sarah Courtney contributed to this report.

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