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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Democrats rip Republicans on student loan vote but what about Joe Garcia?

Democrats were firing off emails this afternoon as the GOP-controlled House voted on a plan that would upend the student loan program, setting up a clash with the Senate.

"Congressman Dan Webster just joined House Republicans to approve the “Students Pay More Act,” a measure to force college students to pay more interest for their education loans. With the average college student shouldering $26,000 in debt, the Associated Press this week described how 'student loan rates could steadily climb and cost students more over the long haul under the plan House Republicans are considering,' " read a blast from the DCCC.

But lost in the partisan noise was this: Democrat Joe Garcia of Florida was one of four Democrats to side with the GOP. (Rep. Vern Buchanan of Sarasota was one of a handful of Republicans to join the minority.)

Garcia will face a tough re-election and needs to stress, as his own press release said, "reaching across the aisle."

“South Florida’s families sent me to Congress to solve problems and support ideas based on their merits, not political parties. Unless Congress acts, interest rates on student loans will double in July and make life harder for middle class families who are already struggling to make ends meet. That is why I reached across the aisle today to support the Smarter Solutions for Students Act. While I support extending the current low rate of 3.4%, this bill will prevent student loan rates from doubling in July.”

It's a safe vote as the Republican plan will face resistance from Senate Democrats.


[Last modified: Friday, May 24, 2013 1:27am]


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