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Deal on student loans stumbles on costs

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An emerging deal to lower interest rates on student loans hit a major obstacle Thursday after lawmakers were told it carried a $22 billion price tag over the next decade.

The proposal was designed to offer Democrats the promise that interest rates would not reach 10 percent and to give Republicans a link between borrowing terms and the financial markets that they sought. But at that cost, the bipartisan coalition behind it decided to push pause and return to negotiations to bring that cost down.

The estimate was described by a congressional aide involved in the negotiations. The aide was not authorized to discuss the proposal by name and insisted on anonymity because the Congressional Budget Office report had not yet been widely released.

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