As Joe Biden visits NH, Republicans note 2008 college loan debt promises
Vice President Joe Biden is visiting New Hampshire again today as Democrats aggressively work the general election swing state, but the Republican National Committee plans to criticize the Obama-Biden ticket for failing to stem college cost increases as promised in 2008.
New Hampshire is the state with the highest student loan debt level in the country. The average student graduates with $31,048 in loan debt.
“The Class of 2012 is getting a rude awakening as they accept their diplomas and realize they can’t find a job in Obama’s economy,” RNC Chairman Reince Priebus said in a statement that accompanied a web video coinciding with Biden's visit to Keene State College.
“After dealing with rising college costs and record high student loan debt, America’s young people are seeing firsthand that President Obama has not lived up to the promise of his campaign,” Priebus added.
The Democratic National Committee rejected the criticism, pointing to tax credits, a law doubling the amount of Pell Grant funding, and a student loan repayment overhaul enacted by Obama to help cut college costs.
RNC research highlighted how Obama said during a June 2008 speech on Taylor, Mich., that “the American people will have a clear choice in November - because when I’m president, I will make college affordable for every American.”
The RNC's web video features clips of Obama delivering speeches about rising college costs set against clips of New Hampshire media interviews with students describing the large debt they personally face.
“I’m intimidated by it. I just hope I’ll be able to get a job,” said one.
Another said, “Eighty-thousand (dollars) will be my debt - before grad school.”
In a statement, the DNC said: “The RNC’s most recent web video ignores the reality that Mitt Romney’s policies, and his support for the Ryan budget, would be devastating for millions of hard-working students as President Obama has taken concrete steps to make college more affordable.”
The party added: “With a record of statements and actions like that, young Americans won’t be fooled by Mitt Romney’s rhetoric.”
Biden is slated to speak in Keene at 1:45 p.m. The vice president then has a campaign fund-raiser in Boston scheduled to begin at 5:45 p.m.Glen Johnson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.