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Republicans Unveil Sweeping Higher Education Legislation

Republicans Unveil Sweeping Higher Education Legislation

Inside Higher Ed

Katherine Knott
June 15, 2023
If the Biden administration’s plan to forgive up to $20,000 in federal student loans fails at the Supreme Court, Senate Republicans say they have an answer for what policy makers should do next to address the student debt crisis.
Louisiana senator Dr. Bill Cassidy unveiled a package of bills Wednesday that he and other Senate Republicans said would rein in the cost of a college education and address the root causes that are driving students to take on more loans. The Lowering Education Costs and Debt Act, which is a collection of five bills, gives a good look into Cassidy’s priorities as ranking Republican on the Senate education committee.
“Student loan debt is an anchor on people’s feet, and that is what is keeping them from mobility,” Cassidy said at a press conference. “We’re trying to make it so that this person has a future untethered by student loan debt, which predictably they would not be able to pay back.”
Cassidy, who sponsored a resolution that would’ve blocked Biden’s debt-relief plan, criticized that plan as a Band-Aid that “saddles taxpayers with a burden again in five years.”
Cassidy and other Republican co-sponsors including Texas senator John Cornyn, Alabama senator Tommy Tuberville and Iowa senator Chuck Grassley largely pointed to colleges and universities as a key cause of the student debt crisis.
“The last 35 years have shown that a government blank check to the universities has made problems worse,” Tuberville said.
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