Democratic lawmakers in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives on Tuesday introduced resolutions to “ensure that students have access to debt-free higher education.” The Washington Post reports the push comes amid a broader effort by the Democratic Party to promote college affordability as a central issue in the 2016 presidential campaign — and to push the front-runner, Hillary Clinton, to propose a national plan for debt-free college.
The coalition advancing the resolutions includes six senators and 32 representatives. The resolutions say Congress should back efforts to “provide support” to states so they can better fund university systems, to increase financial aid to students, and to encourage “less-costly degree completion,” among other things.
“When students graduate with loads of debt, the ripple effects are endless; they’re less likely to start a business, to buy a house, and to realize their full potential,” said Sen. Charles E. Schumer, a New York Democrat, in a news release announcing the resolutions. “When it comes to making college affordable, I’m hopeful that debt-free college is the next big idea.”