President Obama very likely made Democrats' midterm campaign messaging easier by dropping from his new budget a proposal that would have reduced the size of Social Security checks. Matt Rourke/AP hide caption

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President Obama prepares to depart San Francisco on Thursday. Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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President Obama in Denver on Wednesday. Jewel Samad /AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Jewel Samad /AFP/Getty Images

A protester at a fiscal cliff rally on Monday in Doral, Fla. Joe Raedle/Getty Images hide caption

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House Republicans, including Speaker John Boehner (right) and Majority Leader Eric Cantor (left), said Monday they would vote to extend the payroll tax cut. Zhang Jun/Xinhua /Landov hide caption

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Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, (D-NV) during a news conference on a payroll tax cut compromise. Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP

Republican presidential candidate former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (left) passes behind Texas Gov. Rick Perry during a break in a Republican debate Monday in Tampa, Fla. Mike Carlson/AP hide caption

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