This article originally appeared in the Weekly Standard. Click here to read the full article.
By Ike Brannon
Last week the president feigned striking a blow for lower college costs with his proposal to make junior colleges free for all attendees meeting minimal academic standards. True to form, the president has taken on something not heretofore considered an impediment to college attendance with an initiative that will cost billions of dollars a year. Simply put, it’s a crass move that puts politics over policy.
The main flaw in the president’s proposal is that it misdiagnoses the problem. Virtually no one is failing to get a degree because their local junior college is too pricey: Tuition at community colleges is somewhere between $3,000 and $5,000 a year. It’s not chump change, but neither does it impose the sort of crippling debt that the president likes to bemoan.