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Obama meets Romney for a friendly chat over lunch in the West Wing

Mitt Romney shakes hands with President Barack Obama.

Mitt Romney shakes hands with President Barack Obama. (Pete Souza/White House Photo via Getty) (Credit: Mitt Romney shakes hands with President Barack Obama. (Pete Souza/White House Photo via Getty))

Mitt Romney fell short in his White House bid, but he got a consolation prize of sorts on Thursday as President Barack Obama had him over for lunch.

The two men sat down for a meal in a West Wing dining room and there were efforts to keep the visit low key. Romney was brought in through a heavily guarded side entryway and officials said only the two men would be present for the lunch.

The lunch, which lasted a little more than an hour, appeared to be little more than a goodwill gesture aimed at salving wounds left open from a bitter campaign in which Obama accused Romney of being out-of-touch and Romney said his opponent did not understand how to fix the economy.

White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters that Obama was interested in hearing some of Romney's ideas and sharing campaign experiences with him. Obama said during his election victory speech that he wanted to sit down and talk to Romney.

"Without giving any specifics, this was a conversation the president wanted to have with Gov. Romney, as he mentioned the night of the election," Carney said.

There was no job offer for Romney in the works, he said.

Tags: NEWS , Barack Obama , Mitt Romney , election 2012 , ARTICLE , AMNY , HOLD

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