View From the Capitol - Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler's Newsletter for the Week of July 1-5, 2013
As we celebrate America’s birthday this Independence Day weekend with family, friends, food and fireworks, let us remember how blessed we are to live in this great nation and remember the men who risked life and limb to sign the Declaration of Independence.
These men, several of whom took up arms for the cause of independence and were captured by the British, had much to lose. In fact, a dozen of them had their homes pillaged and burned during our struggle for liberty.
They were willing to lose it all when they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor. Each of us who lives in this great land and enjoys the blessing of freedom should be grateful today and every day for their sacrifice and should be willing to do the same for our posterity.
Freedom is not free. It is still being secured and defended every day. We appreciate those who have gone before us and pray for the safety of all those who serve and who continue to preserve our freedoms today.
God has truly blessed this land. Let us thank Him for the blessings He has bestowed upon us.
July brought with it not only our country’s birthday, but a change in student loan rates. With a July 1st deadline on the horizon, the House acted quickly to provide certainty to taxpayers and to students by passing the Smarter Solutions for Students Act to allow the free market, not Washington politicians, to set student loan rates. Under the legislation, student loan interest rates would reset once a year and move with the free market.
But the Senate has failed to act, meaning students seeking loans are forced to revert to a pre-set government rate of 6.8 percent. Under current law, most borrowers are stuck with a high fixed interest rate set by Congress that does not reflect today’s lower interest rates. The House bill ensures all borrowers can take advantage of lower interest rates when they are available and protects borrowers against higher interest rates with a reasonable cap. It is my hope that the Senate will take up this legislation in the coming weeks, approve it, and send it to President Obama. The student loan rate issue should not be a political football that is subject to election-year campaigning and other shenanigans. Surely, the Senate can join the House in approving this common sense idea.
Have a great week.