Students are working hard. Families are working hard to make sure their children can go to college. And those in college are working hard to make the grade. Yet Congress is not working hard enough to make sure they can afford to stay there.
The student loan issue is, in my opinion, a crisis. On July 1st, student loan rates will double. This will impact 7.4 million students in this country, as the subsidized Stafford loan rates will increase from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent.
As it is already, student loan debt exceeds credit card debt. This increase could put college well out of reach for millions of students. This is unacceptable. Congress needs to act, and should have already, to keep this from happening.
Hardworking American families are already carrying $1 trillion in student loan debt. We should be working to ease this -- not make it worse. That is the message I have received time and time again from people throughout Missouri's Fifth District. And it is a message I have heard -- loud and clear.
I have signed onto the discharge petition to prevent rates from doubling. And I am working with my colleagues, on both sides of the aisle, to encourage them to also sign onto this effort, and keep our kids in the classroom.
I believe we should be working to educate our young people, strengthen our economy and our middle class, and ensure their success.
I want to make sure I know what you think -- and that Congress hears you. Please share your story about how doubling your rate will impact your life or your family. You can visit my Facebook page to express your thoughts: https://www.facebook.com/emanuelcleaverii.