Campus Progress Statement: Debt Deal Maintains Vital Funding for Low Income Students
Campus Progress released the following statement today in response to the passage of the debt ceiling bill in the Senate:
"While the deal that Congress passed today to avoid default and raise the debt ceiling is far from perfect, we are pleased that it will invest $17 billion in funding for the Pell grant program for the next two fiscal years, giving over 10 million young people the chance to attend college. The preservation of the Pell grant in the midst of fierce pressure to cut spending is a testament to the importance and effectiveness of the program itself, and speaks to the dedication and leadership of President Obama and Congressional allies who have fought to create opportunities for low income youth.
We recognize that spending adjustments are necessary in order to protect vital programs like the Pell grant, but we are concerned that a portion of the cost savings from cuts to student loan programs will be applied to paying down the deficit instead of being reinvested in education. Throughout the debt ceiling negotiations, Campus Progress and its partners have emphasized that if our country is to emerge from this economic downturn, we must invest in young people rather than cut valuable programs in order to reduce the deficit.
As an organization that works with and on behalf of young people across the country, we will continue to put pressure on our leaders to stand up for what’s right and not to cede ground to the most conservative factions in Congress who have shown that they are willing to prioritize the needs of millionaires and billionaires over everyone else, including their own constituents. We hope that in the coming weeks and months the national conversation will return to where it should be: establishing a robust job creation agenda that will benefit us all and provide opportunities for young Americans who are facing almost 16% unemployment."
For more information on Campus Progress’ work on affordable education and saving the Pell grant, please click here.
Katie is the Communications and Outreach Manager for Campus Progress.