WASHINGTON (AP) — Shifting from confrontation to cooperation, congressional leaders expressed optimism Thursday that agreement was near on extending this year's payroll tax cut, renewing unemployment benefits and averting a federal shutdown.

"We can extend payroll tax relief for American workers and create new jobs and keep the government running and, frankly, we can do it in a bipartisan way," House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, told reporters, a turnabout from weeks of partisan sniping from both sides.

"No more showboats," Boehner said after praising earlier remarks by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., that lingering disagreements on a mammoth spending bill could be easily resolved. "It's just time to legislate."

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