"We expect and hope that Congress will fix this problem quickly," he said. "We believe that it can be done. The differences are not that significant."
The House passed its plan, H.R. 1911, on May 23, down mostly partisan lines. Just four House Democrats -- Reps. Joe Garcia, Dan Maffei, Scott Peters and Jared Polis -- supported the measure.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said Republicans "refused to act to keep interest rates low" and said "are more interested in finding someone to blame than in seeking a solution."
"Democrats are ready and eager to resolve this crisis and work across the aisle to restore the lower interest rates and ensure college remains in reach for millions of Americans," Pelosi said. "For the sake of a stronger economy, middle class, and future, Republicans should work with us to put more young people back in the classroom."
While rates have already doubled, students can safely presume that a potential agreement will likely be retroactive to July 1 and would almost certainly scale back the harsh increases spelled out in current law.
ABC News' Mary Bruce and Chris Good contributed to this report.