GOP Set to Double Student Loan Interest Rates

Millionaires to be blissfully unaffected.

During last week’s debate on the Buffett Rule, the GOP complained again and again that the rule was a political ploy because it would only raise a few billion dollars every year. Also it would hurt the economy and possibly turn Grover Norquist into Grover Norquist HULK who bashes Republican brains with primary challengers made of pure Rubio.

This week the GOP is set let Stafford student loans interest rates double to 6.4% on July 1.

Why?

Rep. John Kline, R-Minn., and chairman of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce said:

“We must now choose between allowing interest rates to rise or piling billions of dollars on the backs of taxpayers.”

The logic is simple. We can pile billions on the backs of taxpayers to help millionaires pay tax rates lower than firefighters and nurses but college graduates need to pay more now.

We are now in the midst of a highly symbolic battle. Who will we ask to sacrifice first? Those who can afford to do so, or the 99% of us who can’t afford lobbyists to negotiate our special tax breaks. And whom do we trust to make these decisions? Mitt Romney, who merely had to sell stock to pay for college. Or Barack Obama who just in the last decade finished paying his student loans.

(I don’t think hardship is a qualification, BTW. Yet empathy is. And shared experiences are the most expedient path to empathy.)

This is a truly brave political statement for the GOP. They’re saying, “We stand on the side of the millionaires versus the millions who have student loans.”

This indicates that they either think Americans buy into the supply side economics that created zero net jobs in the first decade of the 21st century. Or they assume we’re just not paying attention.

Make a Republican miserable, encourage a non-millionaire under 65 to vote today.

UPDATE: Here’s President Obama speaking on this issue today in his Weekly Address:

[CC image by DonkeyHotey.]

  • http://www.dpsinfo.com LaurieMann

    When are rich people going to pay their fair share?  It’s insane to put all this on the backs of poor people and students.

    • sherifffruitfly

      When voters stop voting for republicans. And when “progressives” stop suppressing Democratic votes by claiming there’s no difference between republicans and Democrats.

      And not a minute sooner.

    • Kevin

      Rich people already pay their fair share. The top tax bracket pays 35% income tax and capital gains are taxed at 25%. We do not need to raise taxes on anyone, we simply need to fix the tax code that allows for the rich to move their money in a way that lowers their taxes to almost nothing. The problem in doing that is philanthropy will see a dramatic hit because of the lesser tax incentives. The GOP and their idea of lower taxes is not the problem. The problem is with the tax code and the fact that the Democrats are pandering to the poor by saying the rich need to pay more (punishing the successful). 

      • http://eclectablog.com Eclectablog

        Boy, you’ve swallowed their line — hook, line, and sinker. You clearly are NOT paying attention. Hell, even Mitt Romney admits he pays under 25%. Yeesh.

        • CB_Demented

           It’s a generalization. The point is, 1% of the population pays just under 30% of the total federal tax revenue. Total revenue…not just income tax.

          So I guess it depends on what your definition of “fair” is.

      • BJHare

        Enjoying the Kool-Aid?

    • http://twitter.com/Chamillitary941 Ryan Anderson

      Why should rich people have to pay more just because they have more? That doesn’t seem fair. I’m far from rich but I know if I was I wouldn’t feel like I should have to pay more because I make more…..same for you too, if you made more money you would be peed off if they tried to take more of your money. MOST rich people work hard to get what they have, thats why THEY HAVE A LOT. That doesn’t seem fair to dock more from someone who works harder and applies themselves more at life than lazy and/or blue collar workers. #Hard Work Pays Off. 

      • BJHare

        Most Rich people do not WORK nearly as hard as the 99% if they work at all. Their money comes from capital gains, usually from a huge inheritance. Look at Tagg Romney.  His father gave him $10,000,000 to start an equity firm.  You call that hard work?  I call it a payoff all right but not from hard work. Blue collar workers are NOT lazy.  They just didn’t have a Romney (who BTW made his millions destroying companies and their employees after loading them up with debt, from which he skimmed his millions, and forcing them into bankruptcy)  for a daddy. And don’t PRESUME to speak for those who would GLADLY pay more if we had the resources to do so.

    • CB_Demented

       Yeah…those bastards. How dare they only pay a third of all the tax revenue collected despite being 1% of the population.

      What a bunch of fuckers.

      • http://eclectablog.com Eclectablog

        But own a far greater share of the wealth than 33%.

        • CB_Demented

           Yeah. So? They create most of the jobs as well.

          • http://twitter.com/tamanosou Ariadne Schulz

             No, actually, they don’t. Especially in a recession (one they themselves made) they do not hire or “create jobs,” in fact they try to eliminate jobs and cut pay. Most of their wealth goes directly into their own pockets. A small portion of it is used for stocks which benefit more private businesses, but not the actual employees of said businesses. These billionaires we’re talking about often don’t even show up to work. Many of them have never had to. There’s a few of them (the ones FOX NEWS loves to hate that do work and do give back to the community but they may be counted on one hand. Those good guys also WANT to pay taxes but can’t because they’re too rich.) We are living in a society now that does not honor hard work. They have a ghastly sum of money. Enough individually to completely support them in their lifestyle and house and feed everyone on the street for decades and yet that money remains in their pockets doing absolutely nothing. It doesn’t pay salaries or educate young scientists, feed hungry children, support the arts, pave roads or even buy them gold leaf covered ice cream. It sits in their pockets.

            Meanwhile I am trying to finish my education. I come from an upper middle class family, I already hold a Masters degree and I’m published. But I can’t even get employed as a housekeeper, and yes, I did apply. I have perfect marks and can get into a PhD program, but … I can’t pay for it. I will be lucky if I can even apply my skills before I’m 35 and I can expect to die still in debt because science doesn’t pay well. All this could be solved if loans were reasonable. But they’re not. So, I’m applying for citizenship elsewhere. I, like many of the best of my generation cannot afford to live as a US citizen … so we’re leaving. The US will lose it’s best minds because of a handful of misers.

          • BJHare

            Enjoying the Kool-aid?  They hoard their wealth.  They do NOT create jobs or put it back into the US economy.  If they did we would not have had the colossal job LOSSES we had under Bush.

          • CB_Demented

             Wrong. You’re the one drinking the Kool-aid. They hoard their wealth, and they create most of the jobs.

            Large corporations employ major amounts of people. Major investors provide the money that runs all public corporations, which in turn hire most people who have a job. They also provide speculative and venture capital for new business creation, which also provides jobs.

            You want to bitch at corporations for not investing enough, or not raising salaries enough, fine. But trying to sell some talking points about how they don’t re-invest into the economy is just a load of crap.

            They don’t invest as much as they could. They don’t invest as much as we’d like. But they do almost ALL of the investment we do have.

  • Jimbo

    Pray tell, what is “fair share”?  I want to know what percentage of the federal income tax burden you think represents a “fair share.”

    • Ifolkinrock

      The share of the national income tax burden more or less mirrors the distribution of income and wealth. The problem isn’t all about tax rates, it’s about the *initial* distribution of income. If we hadn’t replaced millions of manufacturing jobs with retail jobs, the median income would be higher and the tax burden would shift more to the middle. If the 1% wants a lower tax burden, they can do something about income distribution. But they’re not, so it must not be that big of a problem.

  • http://twitter.com/Mama_Kath Mama_Kath

    Well if unreasonably high tuition doesn’t prevent my youngest from being able to complete college, these loan interest rates will seal the deal.  The few jobs out there demand college education but the middle and lower classes can’t afford to send their kids to school.  This is a vicious circle that it heading for the U.S. turning into a serfdom run by the uber-wealthy. Ridic!

  • Sean Robins

    TO CONGRESS, FROM A CURRENT STUDENT: PLEASE, FOR THE SAKE OF THE FUTURE OF AMERICA, STOP TRYING TO STRIP THE CITIZEN’S OF AN EDUCATION!!!!! To stay at the top, education is the most fundamental key to unlocking the potential that each one of us possess!!! Realize that what you are doing will, in fact, have more of an impact on not only students, but EVERYONE!!!! 
    TO MY FELLOW CITIZENS:  THE MOST IMPORTANT THING THAT YOU CAN DO IS THINK!!!!!! So open up your mind, evaluate everything, think, and VOTE because a difference will not be made if your voice is not heard!!!!!! THINK, VOTE, LIVE!!!!

  • Quickmaster60

    you people are funny, you say republicans are the bad guys. it was in 2007 that the DEMOCRATIC congress sent this bill to president bush. at the time the interest rate was 6.4%. that bill lowered it to the rate your paying now, approx.3.1%. Now i dont hear any of you libs thanking bush for lowering your rates back then, but it was a democratic bill that is allowing the rates to rise now. look at your own party for this one people. if the goverment got the hell out of the way people you would not be paying so much for your education, or gas or food or anything else you need. this president believes the goverment is the answer,, its not, its the problem.

    • Michael Harris

       So a democratic congress passed a bill, which lowered the rate students had to pay back the government for a few years.  Now the republicans are in power and want the rates to rise so the students pay more.  Less smart people in the world, makes sense to me.  All for the 1%, none for the rest of the country, just par for the course for the GOP. 

      There is a reason for this. . . if the GOP can keep people ignorant, they can do what they want.  Why do you think they are best friends with the Jesus crowd?  Because they are easily deceived, and don’t look at what is real in life.  If they will believe that a “virgin” gave birth, that a man came back to life, and looks over them all the time, don’t you think it would be easier to tell people who believe in invisible men that cutting taxes increases revenues for the government?  That the president isn’t a real citizen of the country, or that gay marriage will destroy society?  Keep ‘em stoopid. . . that should be the motto of the GOP.

      • Kate

         do some research and see where this hike in student interest rate originated Michael, you will be surprised. 

        • Mikeharris

          Jesus, did you read what I wrote?  Stop trying to use semantics to wriggle out of a lost argument.  Using your point if view, it is like saying the Republicans are responsible for the upcoming increase of taxes because it was put in the law in 2001.  It is a bogus argument.  On top of everything, they won’t go up in taxes on the top 1% because it will hurt the economy, but they will on the bottom 99% when it comes to student loans because they are not their base.  A bunch of hypocritical rich a-holes skirting on the backs of the poor in a plutocracy.  If you think anything different, you really don’t live in reality.

    • http://twitter.com/Chamillitary941 Ryan Anderson

      Amen

    • BJHare

      Spoken like a true Fox News aficionado. And processed with a GOP misinformed brain.

  • FireThemAll

    I love how you ignore the truth in your article. The rate is doubling because the democrats put an expiration date of 4 years on the initial bill. The republicans have made their fair share of mistakes but this rests solely on the democrats. Don’t you find it ironic that they set the expiration date in the middle of an election year? That’s not a coincidence, they new they could turn it around on the republicans. Same reason they didn’t want the healthcare bill to take effect until after this election.

  • http://profiles.google.com/garydenton Gary Denton

    The expiration date was to get Republican support in the House – 77 voted for it making it a bipartisan bill.

  • Kevin

    Think about why tuition is going up. Colleges are a liberal institution ran mostly by Democrats. Our Democratic President and his friends at the Fed are printing money like crazy so the dollar is no longer worth as much. Obama wants to keep rates low so more people can go to school, but colleges are constantly raising their rates. So essentially the colleges make more money, the Government makes less money in interest, and Obama spins it like its the GOP’s fault that you cant afford school. If you believe them maybe you do need to go to school.

  • Kevin

    Think about why tuition is going up. Colleges are a liberal institution ran mostly by Democrats. Our Democratic President and his friends at the Fed are printing money like crazy so the dollar is no longer worth as much. Obama wants to keep rates low so more people can go to school, but colleges are constantly raising their rates. So essentially the colleges make more money, the Government makes less money in interest, and Obama spins it like its the GOP’s fault that you cant afford school. If you believe them maybe you do need to go to school.

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  • Kate

    The interest rate hike was put in place by DEMOCRATS, it’s part of Obama-care, people.  Now (with the help of media lies) you’re going to blame the GOP led Congress if they don’t strike it?  I love how democrats get to do dastardly things, and then blame the results on the Republicans.  

    • BJHare

      Good God!  How much Fox News DO you watch?  The bill reducing interest rates was passed under Bush as a bipartisan bill.  The reason for the expiration date this year was to garner GOP support.  Part of Obamacares?  WHAT are you smoking?

  • CB_Demented

    If Obama want’s to really stimulate the economy, he should just forgive the current student debt for anyone in the 99%. 

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