Can Student Debt Unite Young Democrats and Republicans?

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If you’re a recent college graduate, odds are you are stumbling into the most financially insecure years of your life with truckload of debt in tow. A recent survey of millennials conducted by Harvard University’s Institute of Politics shows that 58 percent of college graduates (currently aged 18 to 29) have student debt. A separate report from the College Board puts the average student debt burden at $27,000.

To many college graduates, this is an impossibly large amount of debt to manage. Graduates, who borrowed against their future earnings on the expectation that they would be able to find well-paying job once they completed school, have found themselves faced with an enormously difficult job market. Just 63 percent of millennials held jobs in 2012, down from 70 percent in 2007.

What’s more, their debt makes it hard to save for retirement, access additional credit to buy a car, enjoy a decent standard of living, or even make rent. A near-record number of millennials are still living at home — 36 percent of those aged between 18 and 31.

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