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Editorials

editorial | STUDENT LOANS

Choosing politics over kids

Congress needs to keep a federally subsidized student loan program from lapsing at the end of June, but it shouldn’t pay for the subsidies by making reform of the nation’s health care or entitlement systems more complicated.

To keep rates on new Stafford student loans from doubling on July 1 — from 3.4 to 6.8 percent — Republicans have pushed for weeks for taking $5.9 billion from a fund for preventive health care. Senate Democrats have argued for closing a loophole that keeps some stockholders from having to pay Social Security and Medicare taxes. Each side’s plan looks more political than practical, and lawmakers ought to look for a different source for the funds.

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