STUDENTS NOT BANKS

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TIME IS RUNNING OUT for colleges around the country that badly need Senate to pass H.R. 3221, and the money that would come from cutting unnecessary fees paid to Wall Street middlemen like CitiGroup and JP Morgan.

But bank lobbyists have already begun defending their turf, turning Democratic Senators against students.Is your Senator one of them?

Call and ask them if they will “just say no” to the bailed-out banks and their Sallie Mae Compromise.  Tell them to support President Obama’s plan for student loan reform.

ACT

Sign our petition asking the Senate to pass Direct Student Lending
Call your Representative to see where they stand on student loan legislation
Contribute to the campaign for direct student lending
Pick a Senator
AK: Begich DE: Carper LA: Landrieu NM: Bingaman PA: Casey VA: Webb
AR: Lincoln FL: Nelson ND: Conrad NM: Udall SD: Johnson
CO: Udall IN: Bayh NE: Nelson PA: Specter VA: Warner
Mark Begich
(D) Alaska

Senator Begich believes the reform proposal would restrict students borrowing options.

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DC: (202) 224-3004
AK: (907) 271-5915
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Blanche Lincoln
(D) Arkansas
Sallie Mae PAC maxed out to Blanche Lincoln in 2009. Much like her colleague, Senator Pryor, Senator Lincoln opposes the House bill because she believes it restricts borrowing options for students.

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DC: (202) 224-4843
AR: (501) 375-2993
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Mark Udall
(D) Colorado

Senator Udall was identified as a ‘swing vote’ in favor of the compromise bill by Sallie Mae

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DC: (202) 224-5941
CO: (303) 650-7820
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Thomas Carper
(D) Delaware
Senator Carper co-wrote a letter to Senator Harkin, saying  he has “concerns over the potential impact on Sallie Mae’s operations in Delaware, which employs nearly 700 workers” … even though the Delaware Center specializes in private loans (unaffected by the legislation)  instead of government-backed loans.

Meanwhile:

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DC: (202) 224-2441
DE: (302) 573-6291
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Bill Nelson
(D) Florida

Senator Nelson opposes the bill because of the potential job losses at lending firms EduCare and Compass in his state.

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DC: (202) 224-5274
FL: (407) 872-7161
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Evan Bayh
(D) Indiana

Senator Bayh was presented with over 186k signatures demanding he preserve jobs at private lenders in Indiana. He has cast considerable doubt on his willingness to vote in favor of the reform proposal.

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DC: (202) 224-5623
IN: (317) 554-0750
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Mary Landrieu
(D) Louisiana

Senator Landrieu has fallen prey to lobbyist talking points and is claiming to support the compromise bill in favor of keeping jobs in her state.

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DC: (202) 224-5824
LA: (504) 589-2427
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Kent Conrad
(D) North Dakota

Senator Conrad is ‘on the fence’ about the proposal.

The Senator opposes passing the bill through reconciliation because he claims it does not meet budget targets for reducing the federal deficit. Although House leaders say the bill can be easily adjusted to meet those targets, Conrad wants to put this crucial bill off for another year.

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DC: (202) 224-2043
ND: (800) 223-4457
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Ben Nelson
(D) Nebraska

“In a testament to the sway that student lenders exercise over the Senate, it’s not clear that Democrats have the 51 votes necessary to pass the bill in its current form. Ben Nelson, the staunch friend of lending companies, is against it.” — TNR

“Nebraska is home to student lender Nelnet, Nelson’s top campaign contributor.” — The Nation

“Nelnet is also infamous for manipulating the federal government’s student loan subsidies to swindle American taxpayers out of $278 million….Nelson should be ashamed using Nelnet’s example to defend government subsidies for private lenders.” — New Nebraska Network

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DC: (202) 224-6551
NE: (402) 391-3411
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Jeff Bingaman
(D) New Mexico
Senator Bingaman joined the chorus of congressmen who claim that job losses would be too great if reform were enacted.

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DC: (202) 224-5521
NM: (800) 443-8658
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Tom Udall
(D) New Mexico

Like his colleague from New Mexico, Senator Udall opposes cutting the banks entirely out of the lending process over potential job losses in his state.

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DC: (202) 224-6621
NM: (505) 346-6791
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Arlen Specter
(D) Pennsylvania

From the Nation: “Over the past year and a half, Sallie Mae… has spent some $5.8 million to lobby against Obama’s plan, enlisting powerhouse lobbyist shops like the Podesta Group to sink Democratic support for it. To date, Democratic senators such as Arlen Specter (Sallie Mae is based in Pennsylvania), Jeff Bingaman, Tom Udall and Ben Nelson …have all expressed opposition to the measure.

Scranton Times-Tribune: “Sens. Bob Casey and Arlen Specter should vote for students and taxpayers; they should vote for the reform bill.”

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DC: (202) 224-4254
PA: (610) 434-1444
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Robert Casey
(D) Pennsylvania

Bob Casey has been busy trying to make Sallie Mae happy:

Philadelphia Inquirer: “If Sens. Bob Casey and Arlen Specter believe in making a college education affordable for more children, they won’t cave.”

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DC: (202) 224-6324
PA: (717) 231-7540
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Tim Johnson
(D) South Dakota

Senator Johnson is identified as a possible swing vote in favor of the Sallie Mae compromise.

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DC: (202) 224-5842
SD: (605) 341-3990
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Mark Warner
(D) Virginia

Along with his fellow Senator from Virginia, Senator Warner opposes the reform bill over potential job losses in his state

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DC: (202) 224-2023
VA: (757) 441-3079
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Jim Webb
(D) Virginia

Senator Webb opposes the reform bill because of potential job losses at companies stationed in his state

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DC: (202) 224-4024
VA: (434) 792-0976
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