PAYING FOR one’s college education has became a presidential campaign issue. Surprisingly, the opposing candidates are on the same page.
President Barack Obama is hoping to cultivate the support of the college-age crowd. It was an age group which served him quite well in his successful 2008 presidential run against John McCain.
Obama is seeking to keep the ever-increasing costs of college loans from soaring to epidemic proportions, targeting America’s middle-class. He unveiled his message in three swing states: North Carolina, Colorado and Iowa.
The president’s collegiate plea will likely be widely embraced. Mitt Romney, the all-but-assured Obama foe in November, wasted little time hopping on board, stealing some of the president’s thunder by agreeing with the idea.
We also see much value in the plan. A great majority of college students in the Ohio Valley rely heavily on loans to fuel their travels through college.
They are a necessary evil. Loans do help students meet college expenses but all-too often prove staggering post graduation.
It is estimated that 37 million Americans are hounded by student-loan debt, two-thirds of which is held by people under 30. The total debt attributed to current student loans approaches $1 trillion.
That makes for a tough way to launch a career. Thus, Obama’s plan, embraced by Romney, make good sense. They stand together in seeking a freeze on current interest rates on a popular loan for poorer and middle-class students.
Rates are scheduled to double from 3.4 to 6.8 percent on July 1. Congressional intervention is needed to halt the hike which would further hammer students already feel financial pain.
It is refreshing both campaigns are working for a common cause.
The national debt amassed on student loans is higher than that for credit cards or auto loans. We believe that stat alone should bring both sides of the aisle together to help college students.
We don’t expect Obama and Romney to agree on many things on the campaign trail in their battle for the Oval Office, but in the realm of college loan debuts, they are right on the money.