Huge news. Monday in Iowa, Hillary Clinton talked about moving toward debt-free college for the first time. Take a look at the video.
“The phrase ‘debt-free college’ was hardly present in the national political lexicon until the Progressive Change Campaign Committee launched a campaign in January to push Democrats to support the idea.”
The more public support presidential candidates see for big ideas, the more they will make them central to their campaigns.
“After a concerted push over the past several months from liberals and progressive groups, Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign appears to be on the cusp of embracing a debt-free college plan.”
Here is a summary of PCCC members’ activism together:
- In January, debt-free college rose to the top of the Progressive Change Institute’s “Big Ideas Project.”
- On the day of the State of the Union, PCI released polling data of 2016 likely general election voters that showed federal investment in debt-free college is 71% to 19% popular. It is the #1 issue that Democrats who didn’t vote in 2014 said would have motivated them to vote.
- In February and March, PCCC lobbied Congress. And sent field organizers to Iowa and New Hampshire.
- In April, 5,000 political leaders signed the Ready For Boldness statement to urge all Democratic presidential candidates to run on big ideas like debt-free college.
- Last month, PCCC announced the twin debt-free college resolutions in the Senate and House, which now have over 50 co-sponsors.
- Demos and the PCCC co-authored a white paper showing that debt-free education at all public universities and colleges can be achieved through federal aid to states, increased aid to students, and innovation to reduce the underlying costs of college.
- Students across the nation spoke out at PCCC-sponsored campus events.
- Martin O’Malley sent a national email to supporters saying, “Our ultimate goal should be simple: every student should be able to go to college debt-free.”
- And New York Mayor Bill de Blasio joined the call last week.
Now, multiple presidential candidates are talking about this debt-free college on the campaign trail.
We’re working with allies in Congress on a big media event to showcase the growing number of petition signatures for debt-free college, and to announce new support for the idea!