August 1, 2016
ObamaFtStewart

Obama’s Last Chance to Protect Students & Taxpayers From Predatory Colleges

This is the comment (pdf) I submitted today to the Department of Education regarding new rules aimed at protecting students and taxpayers from deceptive practices and other abuses by unscrupulous colleges.

 

Secretary John B. King, Jr. ,U.S. Department of Education

 

Re: Docket ID ED-2015-OPE-0103

Dear Secretary King:

I thank you and the Department for implementing rulemaking on these important issues of defense to loan repayment, letters of credit, and mandatory arbitration.

The proposed rule should be strengthened to better protect students and taxpayers, and I endorse the collective comments of our …

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July 26, 2016
gunderson3

Industry’s Top Lobbyist: Stop “Assaults” On For-Profit Colleges

Steve Gunderson, the former congressman (R-WI) who is the chief lobbyist for America’s for-profit colleges, warns in a new email, “There has never been a time when the economic, regulatory and political assaults on our sector have been stronger.” Gunderson, since 2012 the CEO of the discredited, depleted for-profit college trade group CECU (formerly APSCU), writes to for-profit college executives — CECU members and non-members alike — that what is on the line is “saving our sector!”

“Saving” Gunderson’s sector might have been better accomplished by him pressing his members to accept reasonable reforms to reduce fraud by …

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July 18, 2016
Steve-Gunderson-President-CEO-APSCU

For-Profit Colleges Use Distortions to Enlist Students to Oppose Obama Rules

Steve Gunderson, the former congressman (R-WI), who heads the discredited, depleted for-profit college trade group CECU (formerly APSCU), is working hard to defeat a new Obama Administration rule that would (1) provide debt relief for students who were defrauded by their schools and (2) take steps to hold fraudulent schools accountable.  In addition to efforts to buy spokespersons and scare non-profit and public colleges into opposing the rule, CECU now aims to get for-profit colleges to enlist their students as lobbyists in the effort — a tack the industry has …

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July 14, 2016
oneDupont

For-Profit Colleges Press Traditional Colleges To Oppose Obama Rules

The for-profit college industry clearly is spending heavily to try to convince non-profit and public colleges to oppose new Department of Education regulations imposing accountability on badly-performing schools. Last week I wrote about how the industry has hired a former long-time New York Times reporter to try to argue to traditional higher education groups that the rule will hurt them.

The Obama administration rule spurring this lobbying frenzy would:

1. Implement a law already on the books by providing standards and procedures for the government to forgive the federal loans of students who were defrauded by their schools.

2. Require schools that behave irresponsibly to …

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July 12, 2016
dole

Bob Dole Lobbies for For-Profit College Facing Fraud Probes

Twenty years ago this summer, he stood on a San Diego stage and accepted the nomination of the Republican Party for President of the United States. Last week, Bob Dole, now a retired U.S. senator from Kansas and an endorser of Donald Trump for president, registered as a lobbyist for Bridgepoint Education, a for-profit college company that has been under investigation for fraud and other abuses by four federal agencies and five state attorneys general.

On July 8, Dole and his law firm, Alston & Bird LLP, registered to lobby for Bridgepoint, which has some 50,000 students at its Ashford …

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July 11, 2016
Pompeo

Koch Brothers’ Congressman Seeks To Block Efforts to Prevent Chemical Catastrophe

Republican congressman Mike Pompeo of Kansas, who represents Wichita, seems to be doing the bidding of the Koch Brothers once again: He has introduced legislation to prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency from issuing or enforcing a rule to improve the safety of America’s most dangerous chemical plants. Wichita is the home of Koch Industries, which has been the most aggressive opponent of efforts to make these plants safer.

The Obama EPA’s proposed rule, issued in March, is — in the opinion of former George W. Bush EPA head Christine Todd Whitman, experienced retired generals, the U.S. …

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July 6, 2016
edwardwyatt

Ex-New York Times Reporter Now Lobbying to Block Student Debt Relief

For-profit colleges are once again fighting furiously, and expensively, to gut a common sense regulation from the Obama Department of Education. The Hill today is calling this latest lobbying battle a “frenzy.”

The Obama rule spurring this frenzy would:

1. Implement a law already on the books by providing standards and procedures for the government to forgive the federal loans of students who were defrauded by their schools.

2. Require schools that behave irresponsibly to post financial letters of credit so money will be available to pay claims in case the school melts down.

3. Allow students who believe they were defrauded or abused to …

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June 24, 2016
naciqihrng

For A Day, Broke Students Win

In a world of mass shootings, Brexit, and a looming dramatic presidential election, the deliberations of the U.S. Department of Education’s National Advisory Committee on Institutional Quality and Integrity (NACIQI), in a nondescript meeting room at the DoubleTree Crystal City in Arlington, VA,  would hardly seem to matter.

But, yesterday, it did matter. By the scheduled 8:30 am start time, the room was hot and packed, with seemingly more people, at least, than at any 2016 Jeb Bush event. At stake were billions of dollars that for-profit colleges want to keep getting, the integrity of federal aid programs, and the futures of countless …

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