President Clinton won't find it easy to convince Republicans in Congress that the FHA mortgage insurance plan should be expanded to let the government insure home loans as large as $227,150.

Under Mr. Clinton's proposal, which will be sent to Congress next month in his 1999 budget, the Depression-era program would have the same loan ceiling as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government-sponsored mortgage investors. Loans under the FHA program are now insured up to 75% of the Fannie/Freddie ceiling.

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