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Photo by: Jacquelyn Martin

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (left), with House Speaker John A. Boehner, speaks to reporters outside the White House in Washington on Friday, Nov. 16, 2012, following a meeting with President Obama to discuss the economy and the deficit. Mr. Obama's re-election has stiffened Democrats' spine against cutting popular benefit programs such as Medicare and Social Security. Their new resolve could become as big a hurdle to reaching a deal for skirting economy-crippling tax increases and spending cuts in January as Republicans' resistance to raising tax rates on the wealthy. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

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