House passes highway jobs bill, halts student loan rate hike

The House has passed a bill aimed at salvaging 2.8 million jobs and forestalling a sharp increase in interest rates on college loans.

The measure, which cleared the House on a 373-52 vote, and Senate approval is expected shortly. The legislation also would shore up the federal flood insurance program.

The bill would spend more than $100 billion on highway and transit programs over two years.

And it would also prevent a doubling of interest rates on new student loans, which is scheduled to go into effect Sunday.

A deal clearing the way for passage of the bill was reached after Republicans gave up their demands that the bill require approval of the contentious Keystone XL pipeline and Democrats gave way on environment protections.


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