Despite the last-minute fiscal cliff agreements, Americans are still likely to see their paychecks shrink somewhat because of a separate battle over payroll taxes.
The government temporarily lowered the payroll tax rate in 2011 from 6.2 percent to 4.2 percent to put more money in the pockets of Americans. That adjustment, which has cost about $120 billion each year, expired Monday.
Now, Americans earning $30,000 a year will take home $50 less per month. Those earning $113,700 will lose $189.50 a month.
With the latest battle round over, lawmakers will next set their sights on the other items on their docket of congressional squabbles over money: the debt ceiling and resolving the sequester.
Obama said he hopes leaders in Washington this year will focus on "seeing if we can put a package like this together with a little bit less drama, a little less brinksmanship (and) not scare the heck out of folks quite as much."
He thanked bipartisan House and Senate leaders for finally reaching a resolution Tuesday, but said Congress' work this year is just beginning.
"I hope that everybody now gets at least a day off I guess, or a few days off, so that people can refresh themselves, because we're going to have a lot of work to do in 2013."
He then flew to Hawaii to rejoin his wife and daughters on their winter vacation.
Angry rhetoric flew
In the tense days leading up to the deal, heated words flew between some Democrats and Republicans.
On Friday, after Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid accused Boehner of holding a "dictatorship" in his chamber, the House speaker responded with a profanity.
"Go f--- yourself," Boehner said to Reid, according to a source with knowledge of the exchange in a White House lobby.