Bernie Sanders “College for All”


John Bozick, Web Editor

Bernie Sanders College for All Act was introduced two years ago to Congress, being called things such as a “pie in the sky idea.” The bill seemed lost, that is until today. Being that public opinion on the issue has never been higher, Sanders believes now is the time for Congress to act in providing college for all.

The College for All Act was introduced by Sanders alongside fellow senators Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Chris Murphy (D-Conn), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn) and Kamala Harris (D-Calif) along with numerous members from The House of Representatives.

Sanders’ legislation would provide at least $41 billion a year to states to eliminate undergraduate tuition and fees at public colleges and universities. The act would cover the tuition for students from any family that makes less than $125,000 a year so long as they attend a public four-year university.

Students, regardless of their income would also be eligible to attend community college tuition and fee-free. However, in order to qualify for federal funding, states would need to meet a number of different requirements.

According to the legislation states need to maintain spending on their higher education systems, academic instruction and need based financial aid. The act would prohibit colleges from using funding to build non-academic buildings such as sports stadiums and from being used for administrator salaries and merit-based financial aid.

Under the act, the federal government would provide 67 percent of the funding while states would need to provide the remaining 33 percent. All in all, the entire total cost of the act levels out at a total cost of $600 billion.

Funding for the act would be done through a specific Wall Street tax that would work by imposing a Wall Street speculation tax of about 0.5 percent on all stock trades. 

This tax could potentially bring in close to $300 billion in tax revenue a year once implemented. Similar taxes have been imposed in countries such as Denmark, Germany, France, Switzerland and Hong Kong among others.

Sanders is urging colleges across America to participate in hosting College for All rallies on Oct. 10 at 7 p.m. while participating in his live-stream on his Facebook page. The purpose of his fight is to protest student loan debt that has accumulated drastically in the recent years.  

Writing in an e-mail op-ed, Sanders states, “It’s no secret that student debt in America has reached crisis proportions, with more than 40 million Americans owing over $1.3 trillion. All across this country, young people are struggling with outrageous debt for decades, which impacts their ability to get married, have kids or buy a home. People should not be punished for getting the education they need.”

As the political climate in this country continues to sour among partisan fighting and President Donald Trump’s volatile presidency, Sanders continues to show that he is one of the few politicians in Congress who will fight for the good of the American people, not for the good of a political party or his own personal gain.