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    Jim IB Headshot

    Inside Views - January 2016
    Bad ideas and student debt

     

    by JIM COYLE

     

    There has been a paucity of new ideas coming out of the Democratic candidates for president. As I follow the three candidates and their proposals, I am continually disappointed.

     

    Free college tuition is the one exception. With slight variations, all three candidates have called for college to be free and open for everyone.

     

    Bernie Sanders would be the most generous by taxing Wall Street to make all tuition free at public colleges and universities. Hillary Clinton would join with states to provide grants to students, providing they work, and making them debt-free. Martin O'Malley is similar to Clinton in most aspects except he also covers living expenses.

     

    College debt is obviously driving this initiative. More than 43 million Americans carry college loan debt. At $1.2 trillion it exceeds credit card debt in this country. It is a terrible weight on many young people, preventing them from achieving full independence. It also is a terrible weight on their parents, who see them moving home in unprecedented numbers.

     

    What better way to get people on your side than to offer them something for free if they vote for you. In fact, if we could combine Sanders' free tuition with O'Malley's living expenses, I'd switch over.

     

    Read the rest of Jim's column here!