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Tulane Honors Program

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Santorum's Comments on Congressional Spending on Universities

In this article Santorum "Says Congressional Republicans Are 'Restrained' in Treatment of Colleges, Despite Left-Wing Bias." (That link is subscription only. It will be available here until Feb 13th.)

A few snippets:

Despite believing that colleges are dominated by left-wing academics who are hostile to conservatives, the Republican leaders of Congress have been "remarkably restrained" in taking higher education to task, Sen. Rick Santorum told private-college presidents and lobbyists on Tuesday.

"There's no question," said Mr. Santorum, a Pennsylvania Republican, " that the majority of Republicans believe higher education is on the left. There's no question about that. We do, and it is."

"Having said that," he added, "we also understand the importance of higher education to the future of the country."

Mr. Santorum did not focus his speech at the annual meeting of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities on ideological debates. Instead he spoke about legislative measures he has championed that would make it easier for colleges and other nonprofit groups to solicit donations.

...

Saying that he recognized colleges as "the platform on which we have to build the country's global competitiveness," Mr. Santorum touted his efforts to give people more incentives to make charitable contributions to colleges.

Over the last several years, Senator Santorum and Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman, a Connecticut Democrat, have pushed a proposal to stimulate charitable giving by allowing older people to withdraw money from their individual retirement accounts and donate those funds to colleges and other nonprofit groups tax-free. The senators have also called on Congress to pass legislation that would help those institutions to solicit small gifts from recent graduates. Under that plan, people who did not itemize deductions on their tax returns would still be allowed to deduct charitable donations from their taxable income.

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