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How Will Obama Take on Student Loans?

Posted: Jan 07, 2013


Between now and the inauguration on Jan. 21, The Root will be taking a daily look at the president's record on a number of policy issues, including his first-term accomplishments and what many Americans hope to see him accomplish in a second term. Today: student loans. See previous postings in this series here.

Background: American student-loan debt now stands at nearly $1 trillion, surpassing America's total credit card debt. Even more troubling, 2012 represents the first year in which the number of student-loan borrowers more than 90 days behind on payments has surpassed those comparably behind on credit card payments. Reports (pdf) have found that students of color are graduating with more student debt than their white counterparts. During the 2008 campaign President Obama said, "I went to college having to take out student loans, went to law school having to take out student loans. Michelle took out student loans. When we got married, I think together our total loan payments every month was more than our mortgage when we bought a house, and that lasted for about 10 years."

He added, "As I said, what we are looking at potentially is being able to consolidate some of the loans, and if they are part of a broader pool, we may be able to lower interest rates on the debt that they already owe. But the key is going to be going forward, making sure that young people in the future are able to afford to go to college."

Read the rest here: The Root



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