Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton announced plans to propose a new federal loan repayment plan which will allow those with student loans to have a guaranteed three month hiatus—after graduation—to refinance their loans into a more favorable repayment contract.
Clinton has long made loan refinancing a significant component of her plan to make college more affordable for more students, a plan which she first announced about one year ago. This repayment moratorium, however is a new addition—and a dramatic one at that.
On Tuesday, at the National Education Association meeting, she said, “I want everyone to be able to refinance your student loans so you never have to pay more than you can afford and for people who go into public service, and I include teaching because it is the first and primary public service,” adding, “Any remaining debt after you refinance will be forgiven after 10 years.”
Of course, this would not come without consequence. Supposedly, this proposal could cost the federal government approximately $1 billion by way of lost interest payments.
In addition to this plan, Hillary Clinton has also advised that she wants to adjust her college affordability plan to ensure that families who make less than $125,000 a year will not have to pay any tuition for their children to attend a public college or university. This is also a significant addition as approximately 80 percent of families would qualify for this Federal benefit.
This may have been in response to her direct opponent—Bernie Sanders’—proposal to offer free tuition at all public colleges and universities. Clinton, of course, dismissed his plan as impossible but, because his ideas are so well received, she may have formulated this student debt alleviation plan instead; something she believes to be a little more practical. In addition, though, Clinton asserts that when she becomes the President of the United States of American, she will possess the inalienable right and undeniable ability to declare this three-month hiatus an official measure.
She says that this three month hiatus will not only give time for graduates to get assistance from schools to refinance their loans at a lower rate, but it will also give the federal government more time to take necessary actions against some for-profit colleges and loan services deemed to have been taking unfair advantage of borrowers.