July 3, 2012 / 8:25 PM / 7 years ago

Obama to sign student loan, transportation legislation Friday

U.S. President Barack Obama smiles while walking towards Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington June 28, 2012. REUTERS/Larry Downing

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama, eager to show voters he is pushing federal action to spur job creation and support education, will sign into law on Friday recently passed legislation on transportation investment and student loans, officials said.

The Democratic president will use the event at the White House with construction workers and college students to highlight his campaign of pressing lawmakers to bolster the fragile U.S. economic recovery. Republicans accuse Obama of election-year posturing.

Congress last week approved a massive job-creating U.S. transportation bill that, under a rare bipartisan deal, will also keep interest rates low for millions of federal student loans and maintain federal flood insurance.

Democrats and Republicans embraced the measure, which will provide $105 billion in transportation spending over the next 27 months intended to create or save about 3 million jobs. Job creation is a key issue ahead of the November 6 congressional and presidential elections.

Obama, faced with public concern over high U.S. unemployment, had urged Congress to approve the transportation bill and take steps to prevent interest rates from doubling on federal college loans for 7.4 million students.

Republicans had sought to tie the transportation bill to an accelerated approval of TransCanada Corp.’s Keystone oil pipeline, which the White House opposed doing, but dropped the demand last week.

Reporting by Alister Bull; Editing by Will Dunham

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