The Republicans and Democrats are continuing to fight about extending the payroll tax for a full year.
What looked like a holiday gift for the middle class has turned into another congressional standoff.
House Republicans refuse to rubber stamp a temporary payroll tax cut extension passed by a wide majority of the Senate and endorsed by the White House.
"A two-month extension creates uncertainty and causes problems for people trying to create jobs in the private sector," said House Speaker John Boehner.
But the showdown is creating uncertainty for 160 million Americans whose paychecks will shrink on January 1st if lawmakers don't act.
The White House has changed its tax increase countdown clock to blame the house.
The Senate left town for the holidays after passing an extension bill on Saturday.
And Senate majority leader says Harry Reid says he's not calling senators back.
Republicans are using the president's own words against him.
"The president has said repeatedly no one should go on vacation until the work is done," said Boehner.