Thompson during debate over the Smarter Solutions for Students Act
May 23, 2013
"I thank my colleague for yielding. Absent congressional action, interest rates on student loans will double from 3.4 to 6.8% on July 1st.
We need both parties and both chambers working on solutions now -- we can't afford more last minute back rooms deals and political brinksmanship.
The Smarter Solutions for Students Act is a commonsense approach.
This bill prevents the rate hike from happening and ends what has become an annual debate within Congress on how to set the rates for student loans.
This bill puts in place a rate system that is more predictable and affordable, and it builds on a proposal put forward by President Obama in his Fiscal Year 2014 budget request.
Both of these proposals move to a market-based interest rate -- not one set by politicians in Washington.
We have a responsibility to America's youth to put forward a long term plan for college affordability. The bill is good first step and will offer students the lowest possible cost for higher education while ensuring the solvency of these important loan programs.
I encourage my colleagues to join in support of this bill. I yield back."