After months of sharp-elbowed politicking in an election campaign that saw upward of $6 billion spent, Americans woke up Nov. 7 having reaffirmed the political status quo: President Barack Obama was returned to the White House with the overwhelming support of the country’s youth and minority vote; the Republicans retained their majority in the House of Representatives; and the dysfunctional cohabitation of Washington’s centers of power promised tough times ahead as the “fiscal cliff” looms. Negotiations over a new budget remain deadlocked, raising the risk of the New Year triggering a series of tax hikes and spending cuts that could return the U.S. economy to recession. Buoyed by his renewed mandate, it remains to be seen how and whether Obama — a pragmatic, cautious leader — intends to both mollify his GOP adversaries and stick to his promise to allow the Bush-era tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans to expire. But House Republicans face a similar dilemma, fighting to keep those tax rates but avoid being blamed for a fiscal body blow.
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Top 10 Education Stories
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- 9. The Rise of the Digital Textbook
- 8. Harvard’s Cheating Scandal
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- 6. Bypassing No Child Left Behind
- 5. The Ever-Worsening Student Loan Crisis
- 4. UVA President Ousted—Then Reinstated
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Top 10 U.S. News Stories
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- 7. The Fall of Gen. David Petraeus
- 6. Amnesty for the Undocumented?
- 5. Mayhem at Aurora and Oak Creek
- 4. The Killing of Trayvon Martin
- 3. ‘Obamacare’ Upheld
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