A dark cloud passes over the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C. Many lawmakers fear that Congress' already low approval rating will sink even further after the failure of the supercommittee. Mark Wilson/Getty Images hide caption

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Grover Norquist, president of the taxpayer advocacy group Americans for Tax Reform Haraz N. Ghanbari/AP hide caption

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The ideas of John Maynard Keynes, seen here around 1940, had great influence over the economic policies that followed the Great Depression and World War II. Walter Stoneman/Getty Images hide caption

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Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., accompanied by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., gestures during a news conference on Capitol Hill on Thursday to discuss committee action on legislation to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act. Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP hide caption

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President Obama shakes hands with members of the audience Wednesday after speaking in front of the Key Bridge, in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington, D.C. He urged Congress to pass the infrastructure piece of the American Jobs Act. Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP hide caption

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Rep. Michele Bachmann, shown speaking at a reception by the anti-tax group Iowans for Tax Relief, was once a prosecutor for the IRS. On the campaign trail, she has made that part of her resume a selling point.

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President Reagan signs the Tax Reform Act of 1986. The bipartisan reform shifted a large part of the tax burden from individuals to corporations and also exempted millions of low-income households from federal income taxes.

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