<>"They didn't do any of the tough stuff. We've taken two steps now, but those two steps combined aren't enough to put our fiscal house in order." — Erskine Bowles, chairman of President Barack Obama's 2010 deficit commission, after this week's deal averting the "fiscal cliff" laid the groundwork for more combustible struggles in Washington over taxes, spending and debt in the next few months.
"There's only one group to blame for the continued suffering of these innocent victims, the House majority and their speaker, John Boehner. This is not a Republican or a Democratic issue. — Republican New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie before Boehner agreed to allow a vote on billions of dollars in aid for Superstorm Sandy recovery.
"I'm not worried about her going back. The fear kind of kicks back in a little bit, but we're very excited for her and we got to see many, many kids today. The atmosphere was very cheerful." — Sandy Hook Elementary School parent Vinny Alvarez as he took a tour of daughter Cynthia's new school, in nearby Monroe, Conn.