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Government and Politics

Portman backs Senate deal on student loan interest rates
Proposed rate lower than current fixed rate, changes possible

In The Region:

Ohio’s U.S. Sen. Rob Portman is supporting a deal to tie interest rates on student loans to market rates, but also includes caps on how high they can go.

Portman says this deal is a better alternative to one that Senate Democrats proposed because it includes subsidized and unsubsidized loans.


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"The proposal that the Democrats had to continue the 3.4 percent just as is would have added more unpredictability, more uncertainty because we’d be hitting this issue again a year from now," Portman says. "But also it didn’t deal with the majority of student loans, so they would have had a higher rate at 6.8 percent as compared to this average rate of 3.86 percent."

A vote on the plan could happen as early as this week. Undergraduates would see a rate of 3.86 percent in the fall that could climb to, at most, 8.25 percent.

The Washington Post reports the plan could save the government $715 million over the next decade.

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