Quote of the Day
It is important for women to have a choice, to have an opportunity to plan their families, because if they don't, the Republicans have said this is an ownership society. You are on your own, and they're going to begrudge that child everything, from WIC to a Pell Grant to health insurance.
The Republicans claim they are for strengthening Pell grants when the truth is that over the last four years, their legislation has done the exact opposite.
Pell Grants are, and have been, critically important tools in making higher education a possibility for lower- and middle-income students.
In my family, there was one cardinal priority - education. College was not an option; it was mandatory. So even though we didn't have a lot of money, we made it work. I signed up for financial aid, Pell Grants, work study, anything I could.
I am here to give the American people some straight talk about higher education. Some have said we might have cut financial aid for college students. The truth is we have expanded access to college for our neediest students through the record growth of the Pell grant program.
Pell grants are the foundation of Federal student aid. As someone who attended college with the help of Pell grants and as chairman of the Pell Grant Caucus, I know how important they are for our Nation's low-income students.
Given the best of all possible worlds, I would make a few changes. I would place emphasis on increasing the amount of funding that goes into programs like Pell Grants, that purely and simply award funds to students who really cannot afford full tuition.
Funding and maintaining programs from Head Start to Pell Grants must be a high priority.
The higher amount you put into higher education, at the federal level particularly, the more the price of higher education rises. It's the dog that never catches its tail. You increase student loans, you increase grants, you increase Pell grants, Stafford loans, and what happens? They raise the price.
The Pell Grant is more than a financial aid program for college students in need. It is the right thing to do for America's college students, and it is the right thing to do for America's economy.
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