Mr. CLEAVER. Mr. Speaker, I rise to support the extension of student loan interest rates. Student loans have been an essential tool for many students and families who otherwise wouldn't be able to afford the soaring costs of college tuition. However, in a few short weeks, Federal student loan interest rates are set to double from 3.4 to 6.8 percent, making the dream of attaining college even more difficult for millions of students and families.
We need to act now. It is our responsibility to ensure that all children have the ability to pursue higher education. The cost of attending college has gone up almost 30 percent in the last 10 years. We cannot afford to ignore struggling students across this Nation. In these uncertain economic times, we can make no greater investment than in education. More and more jobs require some sort of post-secondary education, and by 2018, just 6 years from now, 63 percent of employment opportunities will demand an education beyond high school.
It is pathological partisanship that is preventing us from dealing with this important issue.