Senate rejects dueling plans on student loans

Both measures rejected May 24 would delay the interest rate increase for a year at a cost of $6 billion.

The Senate rejected dueling Democratic and Republican plans on May 24 for averting a July 1 doubling of interest rates on federal college loans for 7.4 million students, pushing back efforts to resolve the election-season showdown until next month.

In mostly party-line roll calls, senators voted 62-34 against the GOP package and 51-43 for the Democratic version, with each proposal falling short of the 60 votes needed for approval to avoid a filibuster.

Though both defeats were preordained, the twin votes gave lawmakers from each party a chance to show they favor easing students’ financial burdens—and potential grist for campaign ads accusing the other side of opposing the effort.…Read More

Affordability of college becomes campaign fodder

Romney said he supports the effort to keep federal student loans at their current rate.

President Barack Obama will try to add the cost of college to the campaign debate this week as he travels to campuses in three swing states calling on Congress to prevent a hike in student-loan interest rates this summer.

But the Republicans’ presumptive nominee, Mitt Romney, moved quickly to forestall the issue, indicating that he would rather let Obama claim a victory on student loan rates than risk a political pummeling for his party on the subject.

More than 7 million students who need to take out new loans this year face a doubling in student loan interest rates under the popular Stafford loan program unless Congress votes to keep current rates in place.…Read More

Students seek to stop loan interest rate hike

President Obama said keeping the rate low would help 7.4 million borrowers save on average $1,000 over the life of the loan.

Millions of college students could be in for a shock this summer when the interest rate on a popular federally subsidized student loan doubles unless Congress acts.

College students on March 13 delivered more than 130,000 letters to congressional leaders asking them to stop rates from increasing from 3.4 to 6.8 percent.

The rate hike affects new subsidized Stafford loans, which are issued to low and middle income undergraduates. They hope to raise enough awareness to get Congress to stop it.…Read More