How College Affordability Would be Impacted in New Mexico Under the Republican Plan

For the first time ever, Americans owe more debt on student loans than on credit cards. If Congress doesn’t act by July 1st, more than 7 million students who rely on federal student loans will see their interest rates double from 3.4% to 6.8%. President Obama is calling on Congress to keep interest rates low, and save these students an average of almost $1,000 over the life of that loan. In New Mexico nearly 40,000 college students would see an average of $912.00 in increases.

President Obama Speaks to Students About Student Loan Rates

President Barack Obama listens to senior Marissa Boles during a roundtable discussion with students currently receiving Stafford federal student loans at the University of Iowa in Iowa City, April 25, 2012. Also participating in the discussion were students Blake Anderson, center, Myranda Burnett, Jordan Garrsion-Nickerson and Martin Lopez. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

President Obama wrapped up a three-city tour in Iowa today by speaking to students at the University of Iowa about the best tool they’ve got for achieving the American promise: a college education.

This country has always made a commitment to put a good education within the reach of everybody who’s willing to work for it. That’s part of what made us special. That’s what kept us at the forefront of business and science and technology and medicine. That’s a commitment that we need to reaffirm today.

Now, here’s the challenge we’ve got. Since most of you were born, tuition and fees at America’s colleges have more than doubled. And that forces students like you to take out more loans and rack up more debt. The average student who borrows to pay for college now graduates with about $25,000 in student loan debt. And in this state, it’s even higher. Americans now owe more on their student loans than they owe on credit cards.

And living with that debt means you’ve got to make some pretty tough choices. It might mean putting off buying a first home or chasing that great startup idea that you’ve got. Maybe you’ll have to wait a little bit longer to start a family or save for retirement. And when a big chunk of every paycheck goes towards loan debt, that’s not just tough on you, that’s not just tough on middle-class families — that’s not good for our economy, because that money that could be going into businesses is going just to service debt.

To make matters worse, interest rates on federal Stafford loans are set to double in July, saddling more than 7 million students with an additional $1,000 in debt. Congress has the power to stop this from happening, however, and as he did in North Carolina and Coloradoearlier this week, the President asked students to tell their members of Congress one thing: Don’t Double My Rate.

Raise your voice and reach out to your networks if you agree that student loan rates should not double on July 1.

By the Numbers: 7.4 Million

Approximately 7.4 million students will rack up an additional $1,000 in debt if Congress doesn’t stop the interest rate on federal student loans from doubling on July 1.

President Obama is on road this week in North CarolinaColorado, and Iowa talking to college students about the steps his Administration is taking to keep college affordable, because he knows that college isn’t just the best investment young people can make in their future—it’s the best investment they can make in their country’s future.

More than that, a college degree is essentially a prerequisite in today’s economy. Right now, the unemployment rate for Americans with a college degree or more is about half the national average.  Their incomes are twice as high as those who don’t have a high school diploma.

But the cost of college is on the rise, and students are taking on more and more debt to pay for the education they need. President Obama has worked to help make sure that every student who is willing to work hard can earn a college degree. Now he’s calling on Congress to do their part by passing legislation that will prevent interest rates on federal Stafford loans from doubling in July.

Raise your voice and reach out to your networks if you agree that student loan rates should not double on July 1.

Marco Rubio Can’t Defend Romney’s Lack of Foreign Policy Experience

Marco Rubio delivered a foreign policy speech at the Brookings Institution today that was heavy on deceptive attacks against President Obama. But the most notable thing about Rubio’s speech was what he didn’t say: The remarks were tellingly short on praise for Mitt Romney’s foreign policy plans.

That’s because there’s nothing to praise. Rubio knows Romney has been on every side of the key foreign policy challenges facing our country today. He’s failed to outline a coherent vision for America’s place in the world or construct any concrete plans to enhance our security or strengthen our alliances.

Just look at Romney’s foreign policy positions and statements over the years:

Afghanistan: Romney has criticized the President’s proposal to responsibly withdraw our troops, implying that he would leave them there indefinitely. And he has refused to say what he would do as President in Afghanistan beyond “deferring to the generals.”

Iran: Romney said in 2007 that he would defer to his lawyers before considering military action. And now he is advocating for “crippling sanctions” and keeping a military option on the table—all things the President has already done. Although he has criticized the President’s approach in Iran, he has failed to say what he would do differently, or if he believes there is still time for diplomacy to work.

Osama bin Laden: Romney said it wasn’t worth “moving heaven and earth” to catch him and he even criticized President Obama for making it clear that he would take out al-Qaeda targets in Pakistan.

Muammar Qaddafi: Romney flip-flopped on removing Qaddafi, first attacking President Obama for intervening in Libya and then celebrating it as Libyan rebels took Tripoli with the help of US and allied forces.

With a record of statements like that, is it any surprise why Mitt Romney and Marco Rubio are focused on distorting the president’s record?