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Committee Republicans Denounce Poorly-Conceived Gainful Employment Regulation

U.S. House Education and the Workforce Committee Republicans expressed strong opposition to the Department of Education's gainful employment regulation. In a series of press statements released this week, committee members criticized the administration's assault on student choice and the workforce, and pledged to fight the burdensome, job-destroying regulation. Read statement excerpts below:

Chairman John Kline (R-MN):

"The department may have offered some minor changes, but they have failed to adequately address the harmful impact the gainful employment regulation could have on students and the workforce. With this regulation, the administration has chosen to disregard the concerns of countless Americans and blatantly ignore the bipartisan will of the House of Representatives. At a time when Americans are desperate for jobs and opportunities, it is deeply troubling the administration continues to push an initiative that will limit the ability of millions of individuals to gain the skills and training necessary to succeed in the workplace. All options are on the table as we continue the fight to protect student choice in higher education."

Rep. Howard P. Buck McKeon (R-CA):

"America is still staring at an unemployment rate hovering at nine percent - substantially higher in California; and we need to utilize every outlet to generate a skilled workforce. I have serious concerns with the Administrations decision to burden many of the colleges aimed at aligning training with workforce needs. Additionally, it is the President who made a public call for an additional 5 million degrees or certificates earned by 2020, which would be impossible considering the public schools are already at capacity. Our country needs career colleges to help achieve that goal. It is my hope that the Administration will reconsider their most recent moves and work with Congress on a more viable solution."

Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC):

"This punitive regulation piles more burdensome red tape onto a select group of higher education institutions and unfairly targets career colleges that create innovative programs to serve the needs of their communities. As a result, millions of students who attend career colleges stand to lose out on valuable opportunities for career advancement and technical education. The increasingly fragile economic recovery simply cannot afford another job-destroying federal regulation."

Rep. Glenn Thompson (R-PA):

"For an Administration that claims to be the standard of transparency, the rule making process and subsequent regulation is shrouded in a cloud of secrecy alongside of substantial legal and ethical issues. From multiple Inspector General investigations to denied Freedom of Information Act requests, compounded by a redacted Government Accountability Office report and substantial allegations of collusion between high ranking Department of Education officials and Wall Street short sellers for economic gain, this process has been an eyesore for the American people and those seeking to advance themselves through the quality education that Career Colleges provide. I will continue work with the bipartisan majority in the House to oppose this flawed policy and will not stop until the numerous questions of impropriety have been answered."

Rep. Tim Walberg (R-MI):

"I am deeply troubled by the news of the Gainful Employment rule. We dont need additional red tape that hurts the ability of millions of people to attend college and learn new skills in the next decade. Despite making my opposition known in a letter to the President and through amendment, the Administration has chosen to ignore Congress and move forward with this regulation. Unfortunately this time it will be to the detriment of many low-income students who need it the most."

Rep. Kristi Noem (R-SD) and Rep. Dennis Ross (R-FL):

"We are deeply disappointed in the Department of Education's decision to move forward with the gainful employment regulation. If the Department was truly concerned about consumer protection, a better alternative would be to arm consumers students with information, and let them make the best decision for their economic and family situation America can rest assured that we will do everything we can to reverse these regulations and ensure that all Americans have education choice and not just those that can pay for the privilege."

Rep. Mike Kelly (R-PA):

"The gainful employment regulation is another example of the federal government picking winners and losers. The Obama Administration believes that the Department of Education should have the power to determine whether students attending or planning to attend a proprietary college will earn enough money throughout their careers to justify federal student aid... Thousands of Americans and educators have voiced their opposition to this regulation, and while yesterdays announcement was disappointing, we will continue our fight on behalf of all students who want to develop the training and skills they need to compete in the workforce and make their way in the world."

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