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Public Statements

Ensuring Continued Access to Student Loans Act of 2008

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. Chairman, I yield myself 2 minutes.

Mr. Chairman, I rise today in support of the Ensuring Continued Access to Student Loans Act. Many students and families in my congressional district fear that in our struggling economy they will not be able to access the financial assistance they need to go to school. While we have not yet seen this, we know that there exists the potential for a real crisis.

I have often said in this House how frustrated I am that we wait for an emergency to occur before reacting, rather than working to prevent it in the first place. I am proud that today this body is proactively putting measures in place to ensure our students and lenders that they have the assistance that they need.

This legislation reduces borrowers' reliance on costlier private college loans; encourages responsible borrowing; gives parent borrowers more time to pay off their Federal PLUS loans; it guarantees eligibility for PLUS loans for struggling homeowners who otherwise have good credit; and it provides the Secretary of Education additional tools to safeguard access to student loans.

All these provisions are good steps forward and will keep our student loan industry strong, which is why I am an original cosponsor of the bill and was proud to support it when our committee marked it up just last week. However, more needs to be done. I look forward to working with my colleagues to continue to address our Nation's economic troubles.

I commend Chairman Miller, Ranking Member McKeon and their staffs for putting together this legislation so that our students and lenders have a safety net during the time of economic insecurity. I urge all my colleagues to support the Ensuring Continued Access to Student Loans Act.

Mr. Chairman, I reserve the balance of my time.


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