Thursday, October 23, 2008

Mitch McConnell hates college students

In the inbox and from the College Dems of America:
Mitch McConnell: A History of Voting Against Students
New Poll Demonstrates Strong Youth Support for Bruce Lunsford

Washington, DC – A new poll released today by Research 2000 found overwhelming youth support for Democratic Senate Candidate Bruce Lunsford. The poll, conducted from October 19 – 21, found that Lunsford garnered 50 percent of voters aged 18 to 29, compared to just 41 percent for McConnell. These results are not surprising when considering Senator Mitch McConnell's long record of putting politics and big business before Kentucky's young people. [Research 2000, 10/23/08]

Just last year, Senator McConnell stood with only eleven other Senators to vote against the College Cost Reduction and Access Act of 2007. With the cost of attending college skyrocketing and family income levels remaining stagnant, the bill increased the amount of money available for student aid by roughly $18 billion over the next 5 years – the largest increase in student aid since the passage of the GI bill after World War II. [HR 2669, Vote 326, 9/7/07; House Committee on Education and Labor, September, 2007]

Unfortunately, his vote on the College Cost Reduction and Access Act of 2007 is only emblematic of the Senator's disappointing record with regard to college students. In 2005, Senator McConnell cast a deciding vote for the largest student loan cut in history. The bill was approved by a 50-50 vote with the Vice President casting the tie-breaking vote. [S. 1932, Vote 363, 12/21/05]

Senator McConnell has a long record of opposition to the Pell Grant – he voted five times between 2004 and 2007 against raising the Pell Grant. [S.Amdt. 3028 to S.Con.Res. 83, Vote 39, 3/14/06; S.Amdt. 2213 to H.R. 3010, Vote 268, 10/25/05; S.Amdt. 177 to S.Con.Res. 18, Vote 68, 3/17/05; S.Amdt. 2725 to S.Con.Res. 95, Vote 51, 3/11/04]

In Contrast, Bruce Lunsford will help Kentucky students excel by expanding the tuition tax credit, increasing the funding for the Pell Grant, and streamlining the application for financial aid.

"Time and again Senator McConnell has voted against the youth of our state," said Emily Sullivan, Co-Chair of the Kentucky College Democrats. "It's time we elect a Senator who will address the inaccessibility of college to otherwise qualified students. Young people know that Bruce Lunsford will bring Kentucky's students the change they need."

Moreover as the Republican leader in the Senate, Mitch McConnell has spearheaded the economic policies of deregulation on Wall Street that led directly to the current financial crisis and made it harder for Kentucky's students to secure college loans given the frozen credit market.

"We need a Senator who will put an end to the Bush-McConnell policies that have jeopardized the ability of Kentucky youth to pursue higher education," added Sullivan. "Bruce Lunsford will restore much needed fiscal responsibility to Washington – as Senator, he'll put the priorities of Main Street before those on Wall Street."

The College Democrats of America is the official youth outreach arm of the Democratic Party.

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