Washington, DC – As President Donald Trump concludes his second State of the Union address, it’s clear that his administration hasn’t learned from its past mistakes and has once again charted a path forward that fails to prioritize and invest in programs that help young people achieve financial security.
Throughout his address, President Trump embraced regressive policies and divisive rhetoric while completely ignoring the many urgent crises facing America’s young people: skyrocketing student debt, stagnating wages, and the uncertainty facing DREAMers looking for a pathway to citizenship. Instead, the President continued to call for devastating policies that won’t help our generation or our economy, like an unpopular wall or repeated partisan attempts to dismantle the Affordable Care Act even as he acknowledged the need to protect those with preexisting conditions.
In response to tonight’s State of the Union, Rachel Fleischer, Executive Director of Young Invincibles, released the following statement:
“While our expectations weren’t high to begin with, tonight President Trump’s State of the Union completely failed to address even the most basic issues facing America’s young people. Rather than detailing his plans to address the $1.5 trillion student loan crisis or to give 3 million DREAMers a clear path to citizenship, he doubled down on misguided policies like a border wall that the overwhelming majority of young people oppose.
Rather than recklessly pursue a border wall, we should invest in making a college education more affordable and accessible for every young person. The $5.7 billion the President has repeatedly called for could give the average Pell grant to more than 1.2 million low-income students, but instead President Trump is shirking his responsibility to young people and pushing a divisive and unpopular agenda.
Unfortunately, tonight’s speech was more of the same from the Trump administration: Misplaced priorities that ignore the needs of young people and gut the supports they need to be financially secure.”