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This is a statement from Campus Progress Action, the United States Public Interest Research Group, the United States Student Association, and Young Invincibles.
Today, Senators Harry Reid (D-NV), Tom Harkin (D-IA), Patty Murray (D-WA), and Jack Reed (D-RI) introduced the Student Loan Affordability Act of 2013, which keeps interest rates affordable for students over the next two years. If Congress fails to act by July 1, 2013, interest rates on federal Subsidized Stafford Loans will double from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent. That would hike the cost of college by $1,000 per student, per loan, for over 7 million students across the country. The bill pays for extending the current interest rates through 2015 by closing three non-education tax loopholes.
We applaud the senators for their long-standing support of students. This bill creates a workable solution to keep student loan interest rates low until 2015 while Congress seeks to reauthorize the Higher Education Act and reach a comprehensive solution to the student loan crisis that is good for students.
We continue to advocate for a long-term, comprehensive solution that ensures affordable rates, but if Congress cannot find an acceptable long-term solution before July 1, it must act to prevent Subsidized Stafford loan rates from doubling.
U.S. PIRG, the federation of state Public Interest Research Groups, is a consumer group that stands up to powerful interests whenever they threaten our health and safety, our financial security, or our right to fully participate in our democratic society.
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