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Pingree Says Student Loan Vote in House Today Another Attack on Women's Health

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Congresswoman Chellie Pingree had harsh words for a Republican bill to keep interest rates on student loans from doubling this summer.

"It's outrageous that Republican leadership is using the crisis of student debt as a tool in another attack on women and the entire middle class," Pingreesaid. "They are telling students struggling with debt that we can help you, but only if we take away funding for cervical and breast cancer screenings, childhood immunizations and birth defect treatments."

Pingree said she'll vote against a bill Republicans are bringing to the floor today that pays for lower interest rates with cuts to a fund to pay for preventative care established by the 2010 health care reform law. Democrats in the House have proposed paying for the lower interest rates by eliminating some tax breaks for oil and gas companies.

"Students and their families could owe thousands of dollars more starting this summer if we don't do anything to stop a doubling of interest rates. We need to act but instead of making working families pay for it, how about asking millionaires and billionaires to pay a little bit more or take back some of those giveaways to the big oil companies?" Pingree said.


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