Wall St. Journal:  “Without Congressional action, [the death tax] returns with a 55% rate vengeance in 26 days.  Without action in the lame duck Congress, the estate tax will rise from the dead on January 1 with a vengeance, the rate climbing back to 55% from zero this year. The exemption amount will revert to a miserly $1 million, unindexed for inflation, so more middle class taxpayers will get hit year after year.”