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2016 MILLENNIAL MEMO (March 2, 2016): Keeping tabs on higher education debates

2016 MILLENNIAL MEMO (March 2, 2016)

251 days to go…

Higher ed & student debt made headlines on the campaign trail this week, with candidates increasingly using the issue to distinguish themselves from the competition. With the race for the White House moving into overdrive, sign up for updates here, and follow @YoungInvincible on Twitter to keep up with the latest.

POLITICAL GROUPS RUN ADS ON TRUMP U: “A conservative group released new television ads Friday accusing presidential candidate Donald Trump of taking advantage of Trump University customers. The American Future Fund has committed more than $3 million to airing the ads, CNN reports. The ad comes a day after rival Republican Marco Rubio took aim at Trump over Trump University, which bills itself as a school where aspiring real estate moguls can learn the billionaire’s secrets to success. But Trump University has long been criticized and Trump faces several lawsuits alleging that the company defrauded its students.” (TIME, 2/26/2016).  Similarly, the Our Principles PAC will run ad that “will begin airing Wednesday on stations across the country at the cost of more than $1 million, centers on Trump University, the billionaire mogul’s for-profit enterprise.” (The Washington Post, 3/1/2016)

THE DONALD CALLS FOR THE ADS TO BE RETRACTED: The Trump campaign released this press release in response: “Donald J. Trump released the surveys completed by two of the three (the third survey is being obtained and is of similar nature) individuals featured in recent ads released by American Future Fund regarding Trump University. The previously unreleased documents show overwhelming support for the school from the individuals featured in the ads. Donald J. Trump is requesting the immediate retraction of the ads created by American Future Fund, which clearly was unlawfully coordinated with lightweight Senator Marco Rubio on these misleading commercials. The ads feature three individuals who are part of a lawsuit against Trump University, an educational program that has a 98% approval rating from all attendees.”

COURT RULES TRUMP U CASE MAY PROCEED: “An appellate division of New York Supreme Court said that the fraud case against Trump could move forward, ruling that the allegations are subject to a six-year statute of limitations. Trump’s lawyers had argued that there was a three-year statute of limitations, which would have made it difficult if not impossible to prosecute most of the allegations.” In light of the decision out yesterday, Team Trump’s lawyers indicate that they will challenge the ruling. (The Washington Post, 3/1/2016)

THINKPROGRESS ON RUBIO’S RECORD ON FAILED FOR-PROFITS: “.. Rubio… supported a for-profit college chain that has hurt far more students than Trump University has … as many as 350,000 students who borrowed to attend Corinthian Colleges’ schools could benefit from student loan forgiveness from the federal government for being victims of fraud from the college chain. Instead of encouraging the government to investigate the for-profit college chain, Rubio asked for leniency in a letter to the U.S. Department of Education in the summer of 2014. ..Last year, Corinthian Colleges shut down its remaining 28 campuses, leaving 16,000 students without a college, shortly after the Department of Education fined the company $30 million for falsifying job-placement rates.” (ThinkProgress, 2/29/2016)

CLINTON PITCHES ACTION ON STUDENT DEBT IN LINKEDIN POST: “The former Secretary of State took to LinkedIn Monday with a post describing her conversations on the campaign trail with young Americans who are struggling to grow their small businesses, buy a home or get married because of their student debt burden. Clinton then goes on to outline her plans to help Americans burdened by debt: Allowing borrowers to refinance their loans at lower interest rates, expanding debt forgiveness programs and making it easier for borrowers to pay off their loans as a percentage of their income. ‘It’s not enough to make college more affordable — we need to help people with the debt they already have,’ she writes. ‘And we have to take on this problem for future generations.’” (Marketwatch, 3/1/2016)

IN TV AD, CRUZ SUPER PAC GOES AFTER RUBIO FOR SUPPORTING IN-STATE TUITION FOR UNDOCUMENTED STUDENTS: In an ad called “Sweet Deal”, pro-Cruz Super PAC Stand for Truth shows images of the San Bernardino killers flash on screen while a narrator says that Senator Rubio’s immigration plan is to “ignore sanctuary cities… push for amnesty… and allow illegal immigrants to have in-state tuition at our nation’s top colleges.”

A CRACK IN CLINTON’S GLASS CEILING WITH YOUNG VOTERS?: “Among black [Democratic Primary] voters younger than 30 in South Carolina, Clinton beat Sanders by 13 points, according to MSNBC’s analysis of exit polls.” (The Hill, 2/27/2016)

BUT SANDERS STILL WON MAJORITY OF YOUNG SC DEM PRIMARY VOTERS: According to CBS News South Carolina Democratic Primary exit polling, Sanders beat Clinton 54-46 percent among voters between the ages of 17 and 29 — who the poll had making up 15 percent of the electorate. (CBS News, 2/27/2016)

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