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Congress: Something to agree on?

The AP: "President Barack Obama as well as Democratic liberals and moderates all found something to like Wednesday in an emerging compromise to expand the role of government in the nation's health care system, raising hopes inside the party that passage of overhaul legislation might be within reach after a struggle lasting decades. The same plan drew critics, though -- and the threat of more opponents once closely held details become widely known."

"Liberal and centrist senators at the center of the healthcare debate bought themselves more time Wednesday, saying they would decide how to vote after they saw the bill's final price tag," The Hill adds. "Centrist Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) and other senators emphasized they are withholding any promises until they hear from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) about the cost of the new proposals."

The Washington Post: "Industry groups representing doctors and hospitals attacked one of the alternatives in the deal, designed to take the place of a proposed government-run insurance program, in the hours after Senate leaders announced it Tuesday night. They argued that a plan by liberal Democrats to allow uninsured individuals as young as 55 to buy into Medicare would be financially untenable and would jeopardize access to health-care services for millions of Americans." 

The New York Daily News on the deal: For seniors, Medicare is a popular program… But those in the 55-64 age bracket would have to pay more -- a lot more -- especially if the program is launched in 2011, as the Democratic senators' plan envisions."

"A California congressman is dropping his effort to honor Tiger Woods with a Congressional Gold Medal," the AP says. "Democratic Rep. Joe Baca proposed legislation in March that called for the golfer to be recognized for promoting good sportsmanship and breaking down barriers in the sport." Whoops. So much for that.

The House Homeland Security Committee voted by a vote of 26-3 to subpoena the Salahis, the couple that crashed the state dinner. The subpoena mandates that they appear on Jan. 20, 2010, which happens to be the one-year anniversary of Barack Obama's inauguration. Mark your calendars. By the way, an amendment to subpoena White House social secretary Desiree Rogers, introduced by Rep. Peter King (R-NY), was defeated.

"The House voted Wednesday to slap higher taxes on Wall Street investment managers to help pay to extend $31 billion in tax breaks for Americans, including popular deductions for local and state sales and property taxes," the AP reports.

"Black lawmakers who have held their tongues during most of President Barack Obama's first year in office are stepping up their demands that the nation's first black president do more for minority communities hit hardest by the recession. While still careful about criticizing Obama publicly, they appear to be losing their patience after a year of watching him dedicate trillions of dollars to prop up banks and corporations and fight wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, while double-digit unemployment among blacks crept even higher.