Washington D.C. Lawmakers At Impasse Over Student Loans

Senate Republicans in Washington, D.C. blocked a Democratic bill to keep some student loan interest rates from doubling.  U.S. Senator Mike Crapo (R-ID) was among them.

Crapo says most lawmakers want to keep subsidized Stafford loan rates at their current 3.4 percent.  Republicans and Democrats, though, disagree on how to pay for it. 

Senate Democrats want to close a loophole that allows some high earners to avoid paying Social Security and Medicare payroll taxes.   Crapo says, "I personally also disagree with the Democrat position not only because of its raising taxes, but because it is beginning the process of using payroll taxes for purposes other than Social Security and Medicare."

Republicans, like Crapo, want to use money from a preventative health-care fund for the nearly $6 billion cost to keep interest rates low.  Rates for these loans will rise to 6.8 percent if Congress doesn’t act by the end of June. 

Copyright 2012 Boise State Public Radio