Mr. WELCH. In 45 days, the interest rates on some Stafford student loans are going to double. Even though we have a consensus in Congress that low interest rates should be extended, we can't get the job done. Families can't wait. They're sitting around, trying to figure out how they'll put their kids through college.
Take Beth from Westfield, Vermont. She told her children when they were young that college was part of their futures and important if they were going to make it into the middle class. Now she fears she may have steered them wrong. Her family currently holds $150,000 in debt. In a tough job market, Beth's kids are struggling to get a foothold in life with loan repayment costs exceeding $500 a month. Beth would like to help, but she is not really in a strong position to do so. She went back to college later in life, hoping to advance her career, and now she is way down, as are her kids, with this enormous burden.
Mr. Speaker, Congress has 45 days. Congress needs to act. We can't afford to price the middle class out of a college education.