POLITICAL STOCK MARKET: As we nearly the closing bell, Mitt Romney had a good day, rising to 64 points today, up 10 percent over yesterday and now back in the mid 60s along within 3 points of President Obama at 67. Michelle Bachmann took another tumble today, into the basement of the 20 point range with Rick Santorum. Rick Perry is down again today too, not quite in the dismal 20s, but close at 31 points.
COMPROMISE TIME: It was a day that ended with a deal- as House Republicans walked back from the brink. ABC's Jonathan Karl was ahead on the news that the House GOP will accept a deal to stave off a hike in taxes just nine days before the payroll tax is set to expire.
UNDER PRESSURE: Earlier in the day the President and even Republicans in the Senate were piling on more pressure on the House GOPers - and the President joined what seems to be a national chorus of frustration with Washington: "I mean, has this place become so dysfunctional that even when people agree to things, we can't do it?" Obama asked, perhaps rhetorically. "It doesn't make any sense."
In New Hampshire today, ABC's John Berman sat down with Mitt Romney, on day two of his bus tour of the Granite State. The former Massachusetts governor talked about his family's Christmas traditions and later hinted at what he might be dreaming of finding under his Christmas tree. It might be this car…but he isn't going for the $10,000 asking price a New Hampshire voter suggested.
BUSH 41: Romney also said he was surprised today to receive the endorsement of George HW Bush, saying he was "encouraged by the support of President Bush for my campaign…..I thanked him for his support, his leadership, his heroic life, and his friendship. This is much more important to me personally than even politically."
NOTHING GETS ME DOWN: Rick Perry inadvertently revealed that he is a quiet Van Halen fan today on the campaign trail, when his phone rang to the tune of the song "Jump."
LOVE FEST: The intensity of Ron Paul's supporters in Iowa are unmatched these days, as Shushannah Walshe reported from there today. "I am actually a Democrat and I am in love with you," an Iowan told him today. And if the love of strangers wasn't enough for the Congressman, he also got this ad today from his son, Senator Rand Paul.