Reid: Progress is being made on a student loan compromise

Lawmakers missed the July 1 deadline for when need-based student loan rates doubled from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent.

Reid said a group of senators have been meeting at his instruction in Sen. Dick DurbinDick DurbinSenators roll out changes to criminal justice bill Let the Democratic veepstakes begin Senate Democrats push climate change bond bill MORE's (D-Ill.) office to work out a possible compromise. 

Later Wednesday, the Senate will vote on whether to end debate on a motion to proceed to S. 1238, the Keep Student Loans Affordable Act, which would extend the 3.4 percent loan rate on need-based loans for one year.

There is a Republican alternative bill, but Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnellMitch McConnellSenators roll out changes to criminal justice bill Sanders is most popular senator, according to constituent poll Senate Dems block spending bill over Iran amendment — again MORE (R-Ky.) said Democrats are putting politics ahead of students by not considering that bill, which is similar to something President Obama proposed in his own budget. 

“Senate Democrats are still blocking bipartisan student loan reform,” McConnell said Wednesday. “You have to ask yourself why. Well, because they’ve prioritized politics over helping students.”

Sens. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinDemocrats block energy spending bill over Iran amendment Coal Country’s top lawyer takes on Obama’s EPA Dem senator: There are ‘deniers’ on both sides of climate change debate MORE (D-W.Va.), Richard BurrRichard BurrIntel leaders push controversial encryption draft Moulitsas: 2016 dim for GOP Week ahead: Rival encryption efforts clash on Capitol Hill MORE (R-N.C.), Tom CoburnTom CoburnGOP faces existential threat Sanders tops 2016 field in newly deleted tweets The Hill's 12:30 Report MORE (R-Okla.), Lamar AlexanderLamar AlexanderDemocrats block energy spending bill over Iran amendment Overnight Finance: Puerto Rico pressure builds; Big tariff vote Wednesday Senate votes to increase wind energy funding MORE (R-Tenn.), Angus KingAngus KingCapitol Hill’s forest champions helped secure win for wood The Hill's 12:30 Report Merkley becomes first senator to back Sanders in White House bid MORE (I-Maine) and Tom CarperTom CarperSenators urge White House to speed cyber policy updates Retailers battle financial sector over data breach legislation Senate approves new Veterans Affairs watchdog MORE (D-Del.) introduced a bipartisan bill similar to the House plan. The Bipartisan Student Loan Certainty Act requires all newly issued student loans be set to the U.S. Treasury 10-year borrowing rate plus 1.85 percent for undergraduate loans. The cap on interest rates for consolidated loans would be 8.25 percent.

Democrats say that plan would be worse than doing nothing because there is no cap to loan interest rates.

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