Morning Must Reads: Fees

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The U.S. Capitol Dome is lit after the first significant snowfall of the season as the House of Representatives worked late into the evening on December 16, 2010. (REUTERS/Hyungwon Kang)

–The tax deal, including a two-year extension of all the Bush breaks, a temporary payroll tax cut, and assorted other cuts and credits, breezed through the House late last night with support from majorities of both Democratic (139-112) and Republican (138-36) caucuses. Dave Weigel notes that quite a few of the Republican nos were conservatives with designs on higher office. President Obama will sign the bill into law today.

–Charles Krauthammer still thinks it’s a boondoggle and an Obama masterstroke:

Remember the question after Election Day: Can Obama move to the center to win back the independents who had abandoned the party in November? And if so, how long would it take? Answer: Five weeks. An indoor record, although an asterisk should denote that he had help – Republicans clearing his path and sprinkling it with rose petals.

–The Fed is writing their debit card swipe fee (AKA interchange fee) regulations for Dodd-Frank and they are drastic: There are a few options, but basically under new recommendations the maximum fee card processors and banks could charge retailers is 12 cents. Nothing’s final until April, but compare that to  last year’s average fee of 44 cents and it’s shaping up to be a huge victory for retailers and a nightmare for processors and big commercial banks.

–Republican members of the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission have released a reedy nine-page report that breaks absolutely no new ground.  Daniel Indiviglio hopes for something less political and more detailed in the end, but isn’t holding his breath.

–Ross Douthat pines for Mitt Romney’s inner wonk, but comes down pretty hard on him “mid-pander.”

–Majority Leader Reid has pulled the plug on the omnibus spending bill. The government will need to be funded through a continuing resolution that keeps funding at current levels. It’s like an early, pork-free Christmas for John McCain. (Wait, would that make it Hanukkah?) Reid has filed cloture on a standalone repeal of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” and the DREAM act.

–Though he’s championed the re-vote, DADT won’t save Joe Lieberman in 2012.

–Senator Ron Wyden has been diagnosed with prostate cancer and will undergo surgery Monday. We wish him a full recovery. It’s unclear what his absence will mean for START ratification and DADT repeal in the lame duck.

–HHS ads pop up when you Google “ObamaCare.”

–And: Best. Deficit reduction plan. Ever.

What did I miss?

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