Education and College Debt

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While Buttigieg supports significantly lowering the cost of higher education, he doesn’t support making college free for the children of billionaires. Buttigieg position is that college increases the incomes of those who complete it, but the people who go to college are typically already better off. By charging them less than the actual cost of their education, we’re using the tax dollars of poorer non-college-goers to pay for the education of their richer counterparts — whose earning potential will only increase with their bachelor's degree.

To remedy the student debt crisis and the cost of college, Buttigieg instead suggested looking at Pell Grants, states covering a higher proportion of the cost of education than students, a more generous and accessible program for loan forgiveness, and looking at interest rates to refinance loans.

IN HIS OWN WORDS: Interview on 4 the Record - WHBF Iowa WHBF: Do you support the free college for all? Pete: This is a personal issue for us because in our household we live with a lot of student debt. The immediate steps we to take care to make it possible to refinance student debt, to expand the public service loan forgiveness program which doesn’t only help with debt but creates and incentive for things like national service that I believe that we as a country ought to do more of. We need to dramatically buy down the costs of college. Can we buy it all the way down to zero? I think we need to weigh if that’s a fair thing to do as it would be asking people who earn less essentially pay for people who are going to earn more because they are going to earn college degrees. WHBF:So you prefer subsidizing it to a larger extent but not necessarily guaranteeing free public college? PETE: I am not prepared today to say we can subsidize it all the way down to zero, but there is no question that we need to get college costs under control.

JOURNALISM: “Americans who have a college degree earn more than Americans who don’t. As a progressive, I have a hard time getting my head around the idea a majority who earn less because they didn’t go to college subsidize a minority who earn more because they did.” Pete Buttigieg argues against free college. This is why progressives can’t agree about subsidizing tuition.

Buttigieg told people at a rally at Northeastern University that he isn't for free college, but is instead looking at ways to lessen the cost of college — a more moderate approach than fellow Democratic candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). Buttigieg is looking into expanding Pell Grants to low-income students, loan forgiveness programs and interest rates to refinance loans. Pete also stated States should cover a higher proportion of tuition than students, he said. Pete Buttigieg: What to know about his plan for debt-free college By Marisa Fernandez

SOCIAL MEDIA: On student debt, PeteButtigieg says there must be ways to make higher education less burdensome. "If I can refinance my mortgage, there's got to be some way to refinance or adjust the interest rates on student loans when they're too high," he says.