On Monday, April 29, 2002, Senator Edward M. Kennedy returned to
Northeastern to join Massachusetts college students at a press conference
denouncing a proposal by President George W. Bush to raise student
loan interest rates and cut student loan programs.
The Bush administration proposal would have cut 1.3 billion dollars
from the federal student loan program as a part of a 5.2 billion
dollar cut to help defray the cost of Bush’s 27.1 billion
dollar counterterrorism package. The plan included a proposal by
White House budget director Mitchell Daniel to require college graduates
wanting to consolidate their student loans to do so at variable
interest rates, rather than securing low interest fixed rates.
As Chairman of the Senate’s Heath, Education, Labor, and
Pensions Committee, Senator Kennedy assured students, “This
will not pass our committees. We will not let that kind of burden
[weigh on students]” (Northeastern News, 5/1/02, pg. 5). Senator
statement regarding the
proposal is available on his website.