Attention college students — the Republicans are not on your side.
Senate Democrats’ effort to avert a student loan interest rate hike fell prey Tuesday to a Republican wall of opposition. GOP members declared their support for the cause but grumbled about how the majority party wants to pay for it.
A motion to proceed went down along party lines, 52-45, falling short of the 60 votes needed to break a GOP filibuster. [...]
The Dem legislation would freeze Stafford loan interest rates for some 7 million students at 3.4 percent — averting a rise to 6.8 percent in July if no action is taken — by closing a tax loophole on high-income owners of some private corporations. The revenues would be raised via Medicare and Social Security payroll taxes, potentially blocking a stream of future funding keeping existing funding intact.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) delivered his usual spiel about not raising taxes on the Job Creators, because they’re the ones who are supposedly going to hire students facing an interest rate hike. Something they already don’t seem to be doing in great enough numbers.
The Republicans’ preferred method for paying for an extension of student loan interest rates is to repeal part of Obamacare. Specifically, the Prevention and Public Health Fund which, not-coincidentally, could also make the lives of college students easier.