Shamefully, Congress failed to act before today's deadline to prevent student loan interest rates from doubling. This is an issue on which we should all agree. I call on Congress to return immediately to Washington and pass legislation that will retroactively prevent this de facto tax increase on young people already struggling under mountains of debt. At a time when Americans owe more than $1.2 trillion in student loans debt, the last thing we should do is make college more expensive for students and their families. There is still time to undo this rate increase before borrowers feel its pinch. It is imperative that we act quickly, and show young people across this country that we are committed to easing the student loan debt crisis.
To that end, last week I encouraged young people everywhere to participate boldly in this process, join my social media campaign for action, and ensure that their voices are heard. A year ago, students took to Twitter and Facebook and made the hashtag #DontDoubleMyRate trend nationally. That message successfully forced action then, and it has the power to do so again today. Make yourselves heard, and make Congress listen.
Since Congress has not acted, the result would be an additional $1,000 in student loan debt for more than seven million students. Increasingly, recent graduates saddled with student loan debt are postponing other major purchases -- like cars and homes -- and are even delaying life decisions, including having children or getting married.
So the question is: what would an additional $1000 mean to you right now? How could you better use it than repaying student loan debt?
Some constituents have shared their stories below. Now it's time to add your voice on Twitter & Facebook and let me, and the rest of Congress, know how YOU would use your $1000.