Press Releases

Roe Votes Against Government-Takeover

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Washington, September 17, 2009 | comments
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, House Democrats passed legislation that abolishes the longstanding and respected Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) student loan program in favor of the government-run Direct Lending program, which is administered directly by the Department of Education.

U.S. Congressman Phil Roe, M.D. (TN-1), a member of the House Education and Labor Committee, voted against the government takeover of the student loan program – H.R. 3221. Instead, Roe supported a substitute amendment that would have extended the Ensuring Continued Access to Student Loans Act (ECASLA) programs through 2014 and created a commission to develop a new private sector model for student lending. ECASLA passed the House in the last Congress with 388 votes and ensured private lenders could continue to provide student loans despite trouble securing capital because of the country’s credit crisis.

H.R. 3221 passed the U.S. House by a vote of 253-171.

“The Direct Loan program was established in 1993 because a Democratic Congress and a Democratic President said the private student loan program needed competition from the government,” said Roe. “Now, after only 16 years, many of those same people who said we needed competition are saying that, in fact, we just need a government-run program in the student loan market.

“I disagree with this government-controlled approach and I believe it is misguided, considering there’s a bipartisan alternative that received nearly unanimous support last year to keep both programs running.”

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Tags: Education