Senate Republicans hit back on student loans

The NRSC plans to send releases slamming seven senators and three congressmen running for the upper chamber for not supporting the Republican plan to avoid a doubling of interest rates. Democrats have already attacked the GOP for not backing their own fix.

Student loan rates are set to double from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent on July 1 if Congress doesn't act.

"Students are already struggling to pay the bills and face a tough job market, yet Kay Hagan voted against a permanent solution that would have prevented their loan rates from doubling," said the release attacking Sen. Kay Hagan (D-N.C.), one senator facing a potentially tough reelection battle. "Hagan promised North Carolinians that she was a centrist, but instead she's been a reliable Democratic partisan. Helping struggling students should be a bipartisan issue — but not for Kay Hagan."

Other targets: Sens. Mark Begich (D-Alaska), Mark Pryor (D-Ark.), Mary Landrieu (D-La.), Al Franken (D-Minn.), Mark Udall (D-Colo.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), and Reps. Bruce Braley (D-Iowa) and Gary Peters (D-Mich.).

Republicans have pushed a plan that would allow varying interest rates based on current market conditions, with a cap at 8.5 percent. That plan passed the GOP-controlled House but stalled in the Senate.

President Obama has also proposed allowing varying rates but has insisted on locking in those rates for the life of individual loans; he also wants lower rates on subsidized loans. Some congressional Democrats have called for extending the current 3.4 percent interest rate for a year or two to allow Congress to come up with a better long-term solution.

Both sides are looking to score political points off the stalemate with younger voters and their parents.

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