Mitt Romney and congressional Republicans don't just want lower-income Americans to be hungrier, poorer, and more unhealthy, they want them to be uneducated, too.
They Ryan budget, adopted by House Republicans yesterday, would drastically cut Pell Grants and make college education even more unaffordable for low-income and middle class students alike.
More than 1 million students would lose Pell grants entirely over the next 10 years under Rep. Paul Ryan's budget, according to an analysis that the national reform organization Education Trust provided to The Huffington Post. [...]It'd also put up one more barrier to students in accessing aid, by getting rid of a "trigger" that allows students below a certain income to bypass the otherwise lengthy application process, meaning that more would-be students would be discouraged by the process and not even apply for aid.
The plan proposed by Ryan (R-Wis.), who chairs the House Budget Committee, would chop away at Pell grant eligibility, thereby reducing total Pell grants by about $200 billion over the next decade; allow the interest rate for federally subsidized Stafford loans to double; end student loan interest subsidies for those still in school; and make Pell spending discretionary—instead of mandatory—allowing further cuts down the line. Pell grants, the largest source of federal financial aid, currently help more than 9 million students to afford college. Following last year's budget standoffs, next year's maximum Pell grant of $5,645 will cover just one-third of the average cost of college—the smallest share ever.[...]
And it gets worse. Sixty percent of students who receive Pell grants also take out loans—twice the rate for college students overall—so they might be doubly hit by the Ryan cuts: In addition to receiving less Pell money, they would have to start paying interest on their loans while still in school.
Helluva vision Republicans have for America, no?