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In the ongoing fight over student loan interest rates, it looks like Republicans have once again found an issue they can hurt themselves with. Take a look at our newest poll numbers:

Public Policy Polling for Daily Kos & SEIU. 4/26-29. Registered voters. MoE: ±3.1% (no trendlines):

Q: Who do you trust more to keep interest rates on student loans low: Barack Obama or Mitt Romney?

Barack Obama: 52
Mitt Romney: 31
Both equally: 10
Not sure: 7

If this topic stays front and center, it looks like the president, and not his challenger, will benefit. Not only does Obama perform far better among Democrats than Romney does among Republicans (85-9 vs. 63-16), but independents also think Obama is more likely to keep student loan rates down, by a 45-26 margin.

And this is one issue Americans agree on quite broadly:

Q: Do you think Congress should extend the current low interest rate on student loans, or not?

Yes: 75
No: 16
Not sure: 9

P.S. As always, our approval and favorability numbers can be found on our weekly trends page.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Why not borrow money from Mom and Dad? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lgmcp, mdmslle, thomask, jiffykeen

    "Get that education, take that risk..." I mean, why not just ask your Mom and Dad for the $140,000 of tuition it takes to go to Harvard? I'm sure they'd give you a better interest rate than the federal government.

    Some people are intolerant, and I CAN'T STAND people like that. -- Tom Lehrer

    by TheCrank on Tue May 01, 2012 at 10:11:31 AM PDT

  •  If we lend money to banks at 0% interest.... (6+ / 0-)

    ...I think we can afford to lend money to students at 3.4%, in a program that actually makes the government money, without having to find a "funding mechanism".

    Some people are intolerant, and I CAN'T STAND people like that. -- Tom Lehrer

    by TheCrank on Tue May 01, 2012 at 10:12:25 AM PDT

  •  The 16% who say no on extending current rates? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mdmslle

    Not only are they among the hard-core we used to call the Bush Dead-Enders, but they're the OLD half of that core.

    "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

    by lgmcp on Tue May 01, 2012 at 10:17:12 AM PDT

  •  Education is still valued in america despite right (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lgmcp, tb mare

    wing attempts to belittle it's value and encourage stupidity. Now it is time to revisit the idea of free college education for all at the state and community college level which while seeming outlandish and Maoist was actually a goal towards which many steps had been made by the 1960's in New York City, California and other back waters of evil socialism.

    In the 1980's idea that everything should be sold for profit, even health, education and air, fostered by Ray-Gun and his handlers was pounded into the voters minds with the help of the media and the hand maidens of the .1%. This deranged and debasing view of morality and commerce have brought us to the absurd point we are at today, in which advocating that bridges over raging rivers be maintained or that finger paints for a first grade teacher to hand out should be tax payer funded are seen as descents into godless fascism.

    •  This may be the dumbest comment ever. (0+ / 0-)
      Education is still valued in america despite right wing attempts to belittle it's value and encourage stupidity.
      Now who does that?  Seriously?  Not even Republicans are that dumb.  

      Try the decaf.  

      I paid for MY silver spoon.

      by SpamNunn on Tue May 01, 2012 at 10:47:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  No Repub candidate supports theory of evolution. (0+ / 0-)

        Let's start here. Now do you suppose that folks who went to Harvard and other such institutions and have had the advantage of having esteemed teachers expound on the mountains of physical evidence that support evolution really don't think it is the explanation for the diversity of life on the planet? Of course they know this guiding principle of modern biology is sound. So why can't they support it? One reason is they are spineless, another is that they don't want to anger their base and another is that having such an ignorant base makes it much easier to say "hey forget about that underwater mortgage your kid is saddled with while we go about further deregulating the banking and lending industry and look over there at that guy in the turban who wants to eat your first born son!" and have the rubes turn their heads.

        I could go on with examples ranging from using supposed educational reforms to cut taxes to arguing that poor kids would be well served working as janitors in the schools they attend....but I figure either you were being snarky or are suffering severe social amnesia.

      •  What a snob ... (0+ / 0-)

        "President Obama has said he wants everybody in America to go to college. What a snob" - Rick Santorum 2/25/2012

        A mind like a book, has to be open to function properly.

        by falconer520 on Tue May 01, 2012 at 12:26:53 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Santorum (0+ / 0-)

        called Obama a snob for suggesting that Americans should get a college education, saying that college was a site for indoctrination.

        Try the google.

  •  The numbers will continue to show clearly that (0+ / 0-)

    the voters support Obama intellectually on issue after issue.  Yet Romney is in margin-of-error territory in most national polls.

    What will Obama do between now and November to win hearts?  He does suffer from a public aloofness that bedeviled Stevenson and Dukakis.  Even in his takedown of Romney on OBL yesterday, it took him one minute and a couple of hundred words to deliver a jab about the single most impressive action of his term.

    The effect -- we're not talking about it today.

    This election seems to be setting up as unnecessarily close, on account of the president's disposition.  

    "And now we know that government by organized money is just as dangerous as government by organized mob." -- FDR

    by Mogolori on Tue May 01, 2012 at 10:24:23 AM PDT

    •  The President can't take it any farther (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      investorb

      because he'll run into Angry Black Man territory, and he's too smart for that.  The intellectual arguments will win out in the end.  The media, however, has a vested interest in a close race, so you'll see lots of false equivalency and Romney-propping all summer.

    •  It's the "Likely Voter" conundrum (0+ / 0-)

      The country as a whole is "left of center" on the issues. The electorate is "right of center" thanks to the voting system, voting suppression, and the muck that is the campaign finance system.

      Romney's policies, taken collectively, probably enjoy support in the 22-25% range, what I call the "Cheney Threshold" (based on the favorable rating of Dick Cheney.)

      Some people are intolerant, and I CAN'T STAND people like that. -- Tom Lehrer

      by TheCrank on Tue May 01, 2012 at 10:34:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  It's amazing that anybody would think Romney would (0+ / 0-)

    I mean, his whole appeal is to let businesses do what they want.

    What kind of nut would think Romney would pull in the reins on them?

    If Obama doesn't deserve credit for getting Bin Laden because he didn't pull the trigger, Bin Laden doesn't deserve the blame for 9-11 because he didn't fly the planes.

    by Bush Bites on Tue May 01, 2012 at 10:43:33 AM PDT

  •  Please. The Fed loan program is a joke. (0+ / 0-)

    Trust me, as one who is still making payments.   The interest amount and the loan origination fee?  Exactly the same as when private banks ran the program.  
    The only difference?  The Federal Government pockets the profit and pisses it away on something completely unrelated, instead of lowering the cost of the loans.  

    Sickening.  

    I paid for MY silver spoon.

    by SpamNunn on Tue May 01, 2012 at 10:44:37 AM PDT

    •  Guess it depends if you're a graduate student... (0+ / 0-)

      ...or are unsubsidized.

      In 2006, as part of their campaign agenda, Democrats promised to cut student loan interest rates in half. After taking a majority in the House, Democrats looked at their fiscal limitations and moved to temporarily reduce interest rates for the low- or middle-income undergraduates who receive subsidized Stafford loans to 3.4 percent from 6.8 percent, with the rate reverting to 6.8 percent in July 2012. (Graduate students with Stafford loans pay the higher rate, as do students with unsubsidized Stafford loans. Most undergraduates take out both unsubsidized and subsidized loans to cover the cost of their education.)

      http://www.nytimes.com/...

      If Obama doesn't deserve credit for getting Bin Laden because he didn't pull the trigger, Bin Laden doesn't deserve the blame for 9-11 because he didn't fly the planes.

      by Bush Bites on Tue May 01, 2012 at 10:56:20 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  This. (0+ / 0-)

        having just taken out a loan for grad school, I can attest that this is absolutely correct.  I even had to take a freaking online test to be sure I got the point. Undergrad,subsidized=low rate.  All others=higher rate.

        •  It was offered, temporarily, to draw election year (0+ / 0-)

          votes.  

          First time voters, low rate.   Everybody else pays full freight.  Buying votes, and them pulling out the carpet from under you.  What horse shit.  

          I paid for MY silver spoon.

          by SpamNunn on Tue May 01, 2012 at 12:45:53 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

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