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A missed opportunity on the debt

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WASHINGTON — So after all the talk about fiscal balance and responsible choices, the pre-Christmas rush in Washington has come down to this: one more belly-up to the middle-class tax-cut bar.

If, as seems likely, enough Republicans manage to overcome their sometime scruples and join President Barack Obama before last call, Washington will prove once more that bipartisanship is alive and well — as long as it is in the service of digging the deficit hole deeper.

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