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article imageObama signs bipartisan student loan deal

By John Simon Ritchie     Aug 9, 2013 in Politics
Washington - On Friday, lawmakers from both parties were in the Oval Office, watching President Obama sign into law the "Bipartisan Student Loan Certainty Act of 2013", a bill designed to keep interest rates low for student loans.
"Feels good signing bills. I haven't done this in a while," President Obama joked, referencing the difficulties he's faced from congressional Republicans to approve his legislative priorities. "Hint, hint," he added.
Joking aside, without congressional action, interest rates on student loans were going to see a 100% increase from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent, however under the newly signed law, they will stay to a low 3.86 percent for undergraduate students and 5.41 percent for postgraduate students. The plan "will save millions of students an average of $1,500 on loans they take out this year," said White House spokesman Jay Carney.
Under the new law, student loan interest rates will also be linked to financial markets, so the better the economy gets, the higher interest rates will become.
House Speaker John Boehner called it “a good day,” continuing, “With the stroke of a pen, we’ve now officially taken the politics out of student loans," something which has been an ongoing effort for several months now.
President Obama warned that the "job is not done," alluring to the progress that still needs to be made in order to reign in the price of education, and to make college more accessible for Americans. White House spokesman Jay Carney added on to this sentiment, later saying, "Even with this important bill signed into law, much work remains to ensure college stays within reach for middle-class families and those striving to get into the middle class."
Undoubtedly, there is still work to be done. But with the progress being made for bipartisanship in Washington, it is fair to say that we've taken a great first step.
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