Democrats and Republicans, It's Time to Protect Stafford Loans

Barry Lenson

Democrats and Republicans, It's Time to Protect Stafford Loans

Protect Stafford Loans  If you’re a college student and you’re starting to feel like a ping pong ball, there’s a reason why.  It’s because the Dems and Repubs are batting you back and forth.

This time, you’re caught in the middle because the interest rate on Stafford Loans is going to double from 3.4 to 6.8% on July 1 unless Congress comes to an agreement.  (When was the last time we heard the words “agreement” and “Congress” used in the same sentence? Can’t remember when.)

From their side, Republicans have already passed a bill that suggests mining money from the new health care law, and using that money to hold Stafford interest rates at 3.4%. President Obama plans to veto it.

And from their side, Democrats have suggested eliminating some loopholes that high-earning individuals now enjoy when filing their Social Security and Medicare taxes. And Repubs don’t want to raise any taxes.

With something like 46% of all American students using some kind of Federal assistance to pay for college, you would think that members of both parties would realize that it would make sense to help students right about now. After all, elections are only a few months away.  If you want to get reelected, one good strategy would be to help all those students, right?

But not so, apparently. But here’s a nonpolitical suggestion. Why not contact your elected representatives and suggest strongly that it is time to set aside political bickering and do whatever is necessary to keep the interest on Stafford Loans from doubling.

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