In a newly released Quinnipiac University National Poll 45% supported offering free college while 52% opposed it.
The percentages varied only slightly when people were asked about free college funded by a new tax on the rich—that received the support of 41% and the opposition of 54%.
Another survey question asked, “Do you support or oppose the federal government forgiving up to $50,000 in student loans for individuals who live in households that make less than $250,000 a year?” The results showed 57% supported and 40% opposed this idea.
Support declined when people were asked if they would support that idea “if it was paid for by a new tax on wealthy individuals,” with 44% saying they would support it and 52% registering their opposition.
Last week Democrat presidential candidate Senator Elizabeth Warren’s (D-MA) released her free college tuition and mass student debt cancellation proposal.
Current Democrat primary frontrunner Joe Biden supported free college in 2015 according to a U.S. News and World Report article that quoted the former vice president saying, “We need to commit to 16 years of free public education for all our children.” It further quotes Biden saying, “We all know that 12 years of public education is not enough,” and it then quotes him stating, “As a nation, let’s make the same commitment to a college education today that we made to a high school education a hundred years ago.”
In 2017, Bernie Sanders sponsored and Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) were among the cosponsors of the “College for All Act of 2017.”
That bill would have provided free college for families earning up to $125,000 a year, according to a press release. “The legislation would eliminate tuition and fees at four-year public colleges and universities for families making up to $125,000 – about 80 percent of the population – and make community college tuition- and fee-free for all.”
A summary of that bill on Sen. Sanders’ website explained: “This legislation would provide $47 billion per year to states to eliminate undergraduate tuition and fees at public colleges and universities.” The summary then explains: “Today, total tuition at public colleges and universities amounts to about $70 billion per year. Under the College for All Act, the federal government would cover 67% of this cost, while the states would be responsible for the remaining 33% of the cost.”