Society

Sanders And Warren To Present Bill For Free Tuition

| by Jordan Smith

Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts will table a bill in the Senate April 5 calling for free college education for all in the U.S.

The announcement came days after the pair held a political rally in Boston in front of 1,600 supporters, the Boston Globe reported.

The College for All Act will be introduced at 3 p.m. April 5 and an accompanying bill will be presented in the House of Representatives.

"Education should be a right, not a privilege," Sanders said during his failed bid to become Democratic presidential nominee, according to International Business Times. "We need a revolution in the way that the United States funds higher education."

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President Donald Trump promised during the election campaign to take steps to ease the burden of student debt. Instead of pushing for free tuition, Trump's proposal would involve borrowers making higher repayments but exiting the repayment system after 15 years.

Warren, who backed Sanders' rival Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Democratic primary race, showed her support for the Senator from Vermont at the March 31 rally.

"We believe that democracy is not for sale, that we must overturn Citizens United, we must return this government to the people, and that's why I wanted to be here with my friend Bernie Sanders," Warren told the crowd, the Globe reported.

Sanders returned the compliment.

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"You can tell the quality of a person by the enemies she makes," he said. "And to her credit, Elizabeth Warren has made some wonderful enemies."

Sanders and Warren have released a number of bills since Trump took office. They include one calling on the president to divest himself of all business interests and another urging drug prescription markets to be opened to Canada to cut prices for patients in the U.S.

Sanders described Trump as a "fraud," but admitted the Republican managed to connect with voters who felt left behind.

"If you sit home and think Donald Trump won because all of the people who voted for him are racists or sexists or homophobes, I think you got it wrong. What he did is he developed campaign rhetoric and proposals that addressed some of those issues," Sanders said.

He also criticized the Democrats.

"Trump did not win the presidency. The Democratic Party lost the presidency," he said.

Sanders, who describes himself as a "Democratic Socialist," refused to speculate about a future presidential run.

"Too often the media gets involved in, what I call, political gossip," added Sanders. "The issue of today, in my view, is to try to address some of the concerns that I raised about a collapsing middle class, massive levels of income inequality, being the only major country not to guarantee health care. That's what we focus on."

sources: International Business Times, Boston Globe / Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons/Lorie Shaull

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