Ira Stoll on Hillary Clinton's Dangerous Student Loan Rhetoric


Credit: White House /

Hillary Clinton's big campaign rally over the weekend offered a hint of how she's going to handle a trillion-dollar question—what to do about demands by Senator Elizabeth Warren and the remnants of the "Occupy" movement for forgiveness of student loan debt. "I believe that success isn't measured by how much the wealthiest Americans have, but by…how many young people go to college without drowning in debt," Clinton said.

It will certainly be illuminating to watch for the details of Clinton's student loan program. Back in 1992, Bill Clinton was for income-based student loan repayment, or for loan forgiveness in exchange for national service. If Hillary Clinton comes out in favor of a more generous plan—say, loan forgiveness or modification based on no repayment or without any national service—it says something about how the Democratic Party has moved to the left over the past 23 years. In other words, writes Ira Stoll, while Bill Clinton was offering a tradeoff, Hillary Clinton may be offering a handout.