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Thursday, February 13, 2014

 6:49 PM 

Dems pull student loan bill

Dems offered another pulling motion this evening, seeking to take up AB 498.

The bill would allow lenders to refinance their student loan debt, among other provisions, and was the subject of a contentious public hearing in the Assembly Colleges and Universities Committee earlier this week.

“It has become a millstone around people’s necks economically,” said Rep. Cory Mason, D-Racine.

Rep. Michael Schraa, R-Oshkosh, reiterated his criticism from earlier in the week that backers of the bill were promising impossibly low interest rates.

“It’s a bogus bill,” Schraa said.

He then said the issue “really shows the financial illiteracy and ignorance of the other side,” drawing an outcry from the Dem side of the aisle and a demand for an apology from Rep. Andy Jorgensen, D-Milton.

“It was way over the top,” Jorgensen said.

We’re now informal.

UPDATE -- 6:58 p.m.: We're back in session.


UPDATE -- 7:17 p.m.: After Rep. Michael Schraa concedes he “got a little worked up” by the discussion of AB 489, he apologized to the chamber for using the term “pants on fire” in his floor speech on the pulling motion, but says he wasn’t attacking the other side with comments about “financial illiteracy.”
Schraa said he was simply frustrated by continued Dem claims on the bill and said he was worried that the issue of student loan debt was becoming political.
“All of us on this side of the aisle are just as concerned about student loan debt,” Schraa said.
After 25 minutes of debate, the pulling motion has failed on a 38-60 vote.


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