In May, the Housing and Urban Development agency closed for a day, as employees were placed on furlough. The HUD and other agencies were reportedly forced to take a fraction of the furlough days that had been threatened earlier in 2013. Mark Wilson/Getty Images hide caption

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Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius (center), flanked by Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Acting Administrator Marilyn Tavenner (left) and Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Margaret Hamburg, speaks during a budget briefing in Washington on Wednesday. Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP hide caption

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

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Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., when he was campaigning as the 2012 Republican vice presidential nominee. Michael Sears /MCT /Landov hide caption

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As workers prepare the Capitol for Monday's inaugural ceremony, there's word that Congress might not get into another battle over the debt ceiling. Kevin Dietsch /UPI /Landov hide caption

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"It would be inexcusable for Congress not to further extend this middle-class tax cut for the rest of the year," Obama said after the Senate passed a two-month extension on the payroll tax cut and unemployment benefits. Jacquelyn Martin/AP hide caption

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The House voted Monday to extend the federal debt limit and enact spending cuts. Here, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi arrives for a meeting with House Democrats and Vice President Joe Biden at the Capitol. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images hide caption

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President Obama spoke about the ongoing debt negotiations earlier this week in the Brady Press Briefing Room in Washington, D.C. Win McNamee/Getty Images hide caption

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