The student debt crisis will worsen without free community college

The student debt crisis stands at $1.7 trillion, and President Joe Biden’s $1.75 trillion social-spending framework does close to nothing to help the 45 million Americans burdened by debt.

On Thursday, Biden unveiled a framework for Democrats’ reconciliation bill after months of negotiations. While early childhood education and childcare received a $400 billion investment, higher education got just $40 billion to  increase Pell grant awards and provide support to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs). Tuition-free community college was cut from the framework.

Biden first suggested during a CNN town hall last week that two years of tuition-free community college likely would not make the cut, thanks to opposition from centrist Democratic holdout Sen. Joe Manchin. He did, however, promise that he will get it done during his presidency — something he campaigned on.

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