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My Vote on Student Loans

Jul 25, 2013 | Blog

I understand the important role federal loan programs play in helping students fund their higher education aspirations.  For me, attending college would have been difficult, if not entirely impossible, without the federal assistance that I received through grants and loans.  I supported today’s proposal on student loans because it would help students obtain loans to attend college as I once did, while better linking interest rates to the free market and saving American taxpayers approximately $715 million over 10 years, which would be used to pay down our national debt.

While student loan interest rates is the issue of the day confronting the Senate, we should not lose sight of the reforms we need to make to help our people achieve higher education goals that will ultimately help them attain better jobs with better pay.  We need reforms that provide students with more information about the career tracks they are considering before they take out costly loans that they might find difficult to pay off.  We must update and consolidate America’s higher education tax incentives into one provision that will help millions of Americans pursue higher education, simplify the tax code and save taxpayers money.  We must reform the way we accredit colleges, particularly when it comes to student financial aid, and the way we structure our financial aid programs, so that the education system meets the needs of our 21st century students and not the other way around. Let’s encourage skill development that doesn’t require the traditional four year college route and make sure our federal aid programs don’t discriminate against online course credits and help give parents and students more choices.