by Veronica Natal | Staff Writer|
Ron Paul, Republican contender for the 2012 presidential candidacy, announced Oct. 23 he would end all federal student loans if he were elected, according to the California State University’s (CSU) web site.
Two days after Paul’s announcement, President Barrack Obama’s administration announced plans to try to expand a government program that will help the 1.2 million borrowers reduce their payments and consolidate their student debt, as reported in the LA Times.
Paul said his reason for his plan is because the nation’s student loan debt is approaching $1 trillion dollars. Paul said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that students aren’t getting any jobs and the quality of education has deteriorated.
In the “Meet the Press” interview, Paul continued by calling the federal student loan program a “failed program.”
Paul explained on “Meet the Press” how the student loan program is not a part of the cuts he has planned but did go on to say that he would eventually get rid of that program too if he became president.
“If student loans were to be eventually cut, it’ll be devastating,” said Louise Jones, a CSUSB financial aid advisor.
“The loan program helps students in middle income families because they didn’t get grants,” Jones said. “The grant programs are diminishing and if you take away loans, what’s left?”
The Ron Paul official web site, under his plan to restore America states, “It’s the only plan offered by a presidential candidate that actually balances the budget and begins to pay down the debt. And it’s the only plan being offered that tries to reign in the Federal Reserve and get inflation under control.”
According to the U.S. Department of Education, the National Center for Education Statistics stated in their last posting of the 2007-08 academic year, 66 percent of students received some type of financial aid that year.
The CSUSB financial aid web site states, “nearly 75 percent of CSUSB enrolled students are receiving some type of financial assistance to help them attain their college degrees or credentials.”
“I have three loans,” said CSUSB student Kimberly Gonzalez. “If student loans were cut completely I would probably consider taking time off school or getting a job on the side that would only allow me to go to school part time. Why wouldn’t [Paul] propose to just cut one or two loans instead of all of them? More than half of the student body has to be dependent on loans.”
Paul blamed the rise of tuition on the government intervention in the economy according to the Huffington Post. He explained that the more the government is involved with something, the more expensive that program becomes.
“I went to school when we had none of those [federal student loans]. I could work my way through college and medical school because it wasn’t so expensive,” said Paul an interview.
Jones commented on Paul’s quote, “How is an 18 or 19-year-old college freshman going to work through school if they can’t even get a job? Also removing government support doesn’t mean that colleges are going to lower tuition.”
“That philosophy doesn’t make sense in our current economy,” said Jones.