Why do we encourage higher education when, in place of opportunity, the government rewards graduates with financial burden?
College costs have soared in the past five years. During this time, loan interest rates have come down significantly, but not for student loans. At the current rate, which can be more than 7 percent, one year of tuition will result in monthly payments of $200 when the student graduates. Four years, and the student leaves school facing $800 a month loan repayment, a loan that lasts many years.
This existing interest rate for student loans is more than twice the rate of all standard loans. The Republican justification that lowering the student loan rate would not lower the cost of education is senseless.
The economic benefits of having millions of working graduates with discretionary income to afford homes and purchases is lost to us all: to businesses, to jobs. The loss is financially and socially enormous.
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The wealth gap can only widen when young people from average families cannot afford the risk of having student loans. In voting against refinancing of student loans, the Republicans have proven they will stand against the president. In doing so, they have stood against our entire country.